How to Use Cedar Grilling Planks
Plank cooking is a method that's been around for ages, and for good reason. Here's the down-low on the basics.
Cedar planking is an ideal method for cooking salmon. The distinctive smoky flavor of the wood is absorbed by the fish's delicate flesh, resulting in delicious results. You can buy cedar planks packaged for cooking at most grocery and hardware stores.
The most important step in plank cooking is soaking the wood. You want it to smolder, not burn, on the grill, plus the moisture is what creates smoke. Soak cedar planks at least 1 hour, or up to 6, in any container that completely holds them, plus enough water to keep them submerged. A baking sheet works well. The planks will float, so weigh them down with something heavy, such as large cans, bricks, or stones. (Place bricks and stones in a resealable plastic bag for sanitary reasons.)
Once you've got the plank on the grill, check it periodically and have a spray bottle of water handy to douse any flare-ups. If the plank ignites, it could take your dinner with it!