Cooking with Planks
Creating Extraordinarily Flavorful Food on the Big Green Egg!
Plank cooking traces its origins to a Native American food preserving method, whereby foods were cooked on a moist wood plank over an open fire. Today, the superior heat retention qualities of the Big Green Egg make this an easy and enjoyable indirect type of grilling which uses a moist, all natural “plank” of wood to infuse food with moisture and flavor, while protecting the food from direct heat.
The longstanding tradition of cooking on planks has evolved into a popular at-home
grilling technique that adds a whole new dimension to your grilling experience. Cooking on wood planks is a favorite of Big Green Egg fans worldwide, as it adds a subtle smoky or woodsy flavor to all of your favorite recipes, and provides a fun way to serve the cooked food.
Big Green Egg Grilling Planks are made from all-natural woods sourced from certified sustainable and food-grade sources and are selected and cut for optimum flavor. The incredible smoky flavors of western red cedar or northwest alder are infused into your favorite foods as you grill or bake – and just like our natural lump charcoal, there are no artificial or chemical additives of any kind to affect the subtle flavors.
You’ll enjoy getting acquainted with these flavors — discovering which ones impart a stronger flavor and work well with more distinctive cuts of meats, poultry or fish, and which ones are best paired with milder meats, fish, or vegetables. Salmon and grouper in particular are favorites of plank grillers, as are cuts such as pork loin and beef … and even veggies and desserts!
Preparing the Plank
Completely submerge the plank in water for an hour or so, placing something on the plank to keep it submerged. After 30 minutes, turn the plank so it gets soaked evenly and is more resistant to charring on the grill. For variations, try adding apple juice or wine to the soaking water — there will be a hint of flavor and the plank will just smell delicious.
Seasoning the Plank
Place the soaked plank on the cooking grid for several minutes. When the plank starts to smoke and pop, turn it over, then arrange the food in one layer on the charred side of the plank.
Arranging the Food on the Plank
As food makes contact with the surface of the plank it takes on the wood flavor, so spread out your food in such a way that the maximum surface of each piece of food is in contact with the wood. Use two planks, if necessary, so you don’t crowd the food. Then close the dome of the EGG and cook as usual to the appropriate temperature. Always use a Big Green Egg food thermometer to check the internal temperature of food before serving.
Cleaning the Plank
After you’ve cooked and served on the plank, clean it by lightly brushing off any particles and rinse with hot water. Do not soak the plank in soapy water or your next meal will taste like soap. Let the plank air dry in an open, ventilated area. A properly cared for plank will last more than one use. Repeat the soaking process each time it is used, and discard the plank when it begins to deteriorate from the heat.
Big Green Egg Planks
Western Red Cedar wood is known for its spicy and fragrant smoke flavor and is a classic pairing with salmon or beef, and also pairs well with vegetables, soft cheeses with a rind, and pork chops.
Alder wood, with its delicate earthy flavor, is the perfect pairing for white fish likehalibut, seafood in general, vegetables, and fruit.