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8 Terrific Recipes to Grill or Smoke in December

You can’t throw a dart at a December calendar without hitting a food holiday. There are the big ones, of course—Hanukkah, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve. Take the pressure off your oven and stove-top by moving the show out to the grill. Dress warm, and make yourself a Katama kir before you head out to tend the fire. Here are some great recipes to Grill in December Happy Holidays!

Recipes to Grill in December

Katama Kirs

Steven gives the festive cocktail known as a kir royale a New England twist by mixing champagne with blueberry syrup. If you can’t find the syrup, make it with more traditional crème de cassis.

Katama Kir

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Smoke-Roasted Florida Oysters and Clams

Early British settlers were said to be “oyster crazy.” But indigenous people in the New world had already discovered oysters and clams on their own. (Ancient middens—piles of discarded shells—can still be found near my home in Massachusetts.) Many families still enjoy oysters and clams during the holidays, especially fried. But we urge you to try these mollusks on the grill. They take very little time to cook, and make wonderful appetizers.

Smoke-Roasted Florida Oysters and Clams

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Smoked Pecans

So why should you smoke your own nuts? The fact is commercial smoked nuts don’t always see the inside of a smokehouse. When you smoke your own nuts at home, you can customize the nut, the spicing, and the smoking wood. This simple sweet-salty appetizer features pecans smoked with cumin, cinnamon, and paprika. Smoked nuts are an easy appetizer or snack you can make with a stovetop smoker or outdoor smoker.

Smoked Pecans - Recipes to Grill in December

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Icicle Radish Salad

This winter-white salad makes a great accompaniment to smoke-roasted meats—especially beef and pork. If you can’t find this heirloom variety of radish in stores (it is native to the Mediterranean), substitute widely-available daikon.

Pork Shoulder Paprikash With Icicle Radish Salad

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Greek Grilled Lamb Chops with Smashed Potatoes

This recipe was featured on Season 4 of Project Fire and was shared with us by American-born Greek food expert Diane Kochilis. It’s perfect for weeknights, but is fancy enough for guests. Be sure to use your best olive oil.

Greek Grilled Lamb Chops with Smashed Potatoes - Recipes to Grill in December

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Smoked-Roasted Beef Tenderloin

Need a wow dish in a hurry? Smoke a whole beef tenderloin. Yes, it’s expensive, but it’s quick and easy to prepare, and it brings most beef addicts to immediate intoxication. But you can’t smoke beef tenderloin the way you would brisket or other tough, fatty cuts. Tenderloin demands a sizzling crust with a blood-rare or medium-rare center. Enter the so-called reverse-sear method, where you partially cook the beef by slow-smoking at a low temperature, then finish it over a screaming hot fire. Ideally you’ll have a dual function smoker (that both smokes and grills), but we’ve included workarounds if you don’t.

How to Smoke a Whole Beef Tenderloin

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Sicilian Grilled Artichokes with Garlic and Mint

Transport yourself to this storied island just a short ferry ride from the Italian boot. Artichokes are ubiquitous there, and never better than when grilled directly in the embers. Eating them is a slow, satisfying, and tranquil process. Serve with plenty of extra virgin olive oil.

Sicilian Ember Grilled Artichokes

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Smoked Ice Cream with Rum Raisin Sauce

Ice cream may seem like the last food you’d smoke, but wood smoke gives it a haunting quality. Sure, you could smoke the cream and churn the ice cream from scratch, but there’s a far easier way to do it: Use a charcoal grill or smoker. Or use a handheld smoking device to smoke your favorite premium commercial ice cream.

Smoked Ice Cream with Rum Raisin Sauce

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