Cedar planking could be considered an art of sorts, as there are definitely things you should do in order to prepare your planks so you have the perfect grilling experience. There are two secrets, in particular, that you’ll want to pay attention to in order to achieve the best tasting results.
Pre-Soaking Your Planks
You must pre-soak your planks before you decide to do any direct grilling. The recommended soaking time by most experts is two to six hours; however, if you soak the planks overnight you are sure to have the planks completely saturated. Soaking the planks overnight may be one of the top secrets out there.
Many people simply soak their planks in the kitchen or laundry room sinks. Placing an item that has a decent amount of weight to it on the plank will ensure it stays completely immersed under the water. You could also use a roasting pan in order to fully submerge your planks. Putting something as readily available as a coffee mug or pot filled with water on top of the plank can help to keep it underwater as well.
If you use hot or, at the very least, very warm water to soak your planks, you will aid in the process of opening up the pores of the cedar, which will help with the entire saturation process.
One little known way or secret to soak your planks is to use a five to ten gallon bucket with a lid. Set your planks in the bucket vertically, then place your lid on the top and drill a hole in it. You are then able to fill it with water using your garden hose. If you don’t have to soak planks frequently, then you can make use of your bathtub to soak a lot of planks at one time.
To add variety to your plank’s flavoring, try adding a little bit of apple cider, beer, white or red wine, or even fresh herbs.
If you enjoy plank grilling a lot you can store your pre-soaked planks in a plastic bag in the freezer. All you need to do is thaw them out by soaking them again for about ten minutes in hot water.
2. Prepare Your Planks Before Grilling
After you have pre-soaked your planks overnight for best saturation, dry the plank completely and coat the top surface lightly with either olive or vegetable oil before grilling. You might even give flavored oils a try or rub the plank with fresh herbs, sea salt or even garlic. Try using a variety of spices and herbs for maximum flavoring.
You want to pre-heat your grill on high temperature for approximately ten to fifteen minutes. Make sure to close the lid. After this initial pre-heating, lower the temperature of the grill to medium or 350-400 degrees Fahrenheit, and pre-heat your pre-soaked planks by setting them on the grill for approximately five minutes.
Grilling your food to perfection on a plank is amazingly simple, and you will find that the results make your food extremely moist and delectable. Impress your friends with this little known way of cooking.