Q: Hi Dr. BBQ,
I just bought an offset cooker and smoked a chicken using hickory. The meat was way too smokey. What did I do wrong?
–Sammy in Toledo
A: Hi Sammy,
This is a common mistake among new smokers. It is very easy to over-smoke food when burning wood. Hickory is a real strong flavor and often makes the food bitter and even leaves a numbing sensation on your tongue. Apple or cherry wood are quite a bit milder but can still over-smoke the food. My preference is to use lump charcoal with some wood for flavor. If you must use wood you”ll need to learn how to keep a clean fire with a wide open exhaust, or you”ll have to wrap your meat in foil part of the way through the cooking process.