Maybe you cook the same meals, or drink the same drinks all the time and you can’t think of ways to inject mystique into your cuisine and beverages.
For those times, you could do with a smoking gun.
A smoking gun might seem like a whacky gadget. Shaped like a small toy gun with rubber tube attached, this woodchip burning battery-powered device is designed to give a smokey flavour and texture to food and drinks. To use a smoking gun, you typically cover the plate of food or cocktail with a glass dome, which typically come provided with the device itself and then poke the rubber hose attachment under it before you let the smoke diffuse into its target.
The longer you leave the smoke gun and its recipient under the jar, the smokier it’ll taste. A minute will provide a light smoke, more than a minute less than three will give you a medium smoke and anything over that, will have a much smokier flavour. Most smoking guns will have a dial that allows you to adjust the intensity of smoke.
This smokey flavour can be adjusted with different types of wood chips for different effects – if you want a rich, smooth and fruity taste in your vegetables and poultry, you might opt for cherry woodchips. Applewood woodchips give a more subtle and sweet fruity taste and can be barbecued for extra oomph, whilst hickory woodchips give a bacon-like richness which pork and other red meats can really soak up. Some smoking guns will even be designed to let you put herbs or spices in such as sage, or paprika.
Whilst the phrase “smoking gun”, as in a damning piece of evidence has been around since 1890s, the gadgets themselves have only become more commonly used over the last decade or so. Despite this modern use, there’s something straight out of the ‘40s and ‘50s about them. Like a silver screen starlet lighting up a cigarette. A sizzling, sexy Rita Hayworth providing some class and splendour to your old fashioned, or Humphry Bogart cooly sipping a delicious hickory-smoked Manhattan.
There are indeed a ton of uses for them, particularly on those days you’re not in a rush. You can leisurely enjoy applewood smoked blueberry pancakes one morning, then hickory-smoked eggs, bacon and sausage the next. For lunch you could have a smoked peanut butter and jam sandwich, or a prawn salad. For dinner, you could smoke pizza (or even just smoking the mozarella in advance!) and for desert you could even smoke doughnuts.
It can be so much fun experimenting with the gun that you may even end up smoking your morning coffee! That being said, it’s always great to try smoking the classics – homemade salmon or a nice, juicy rump steak can make traditionally luxurious foods even more luxurious. There’s something so cosy and romantic about sitting down and sharing beautifully cooked smoked fish over a candlelit table. Maybe you have it with some smoked wine, or even a New York sour. The choice is yours.