Top positive review
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One step beyond barbecuing - and it works
on 22 November 2001
When Jane Grigson (Sophie's Mum) mentions and recommends someone else's food preparation book as 'excellent', it is as well to check it out. If you appreciate a level of advice such as 'Do not let your ducks catch fire', when discussing how to smoke fowl, and if you are fed up with 'over the top' recipes for smoking pork which include 'Wild Willie's Number One-derful rub', then you should read this book.
Keith Erlandson is a retired gamekeeper, perhaps best known for his well respected books on training gun dogs. In his leaner years, he supplemented his income by curing and smoking fish and game. He therefore has the benefit of first hand practical experience when constructing smokers - which is sometimes lacking in other guides to smoking food. One such recommends using an old 'fridge for smoking, "but be careful not to get it too hot or the food will taint from the burning plastic!"
Recipes cover hot and cold smoking, curing as preparation for smoking, and what to expect! If you have never tasted hot smoked chicken or turkey, or hot smoked fish, such as cod, haddock or sea bream, then this will be an eye opener. The directions work and the results are superb, even pork sausages taste special when hot smoked, and smoked eggs..... The more difficult cold smoking process is also explained in the sort of detail which allows you to start with confidence. Part travelogue, where he returns to his Scandinavian roots, one gets the comforting feeling that he is demystifying what is a very old fashioned and simple skill. If the price of the book bothers you, check out the price of even chemical smoked chicken.