Grill, oven, smokehouse, pizza oven, griddle… This outdoor cooking tool of Japanese origin is more than just a barbecue. Discover the properties of the kamado.
The type ceramic smokehouse kamado refers to a traditional Japanese oven (kamado meaning grill and oven in Japanese). It is recognizable by its particular shape which recalls that of an egg. It allows closed cooking and is both a smokehouse, an oven and a barbecue.
What are the advantages of cooking with kamado?
Classic grilling, smoking, all cooking done in the traditional oven, plancha, rotisserie…the kamado is a multi-function cooking appliance.
” The kamado allows all cooking techniques: searing, roasting, smoking or grilling food directly on the coal or cooking it slowly over low heat informs Floriane Ravard, of Big Green Egg France (Big Green Egg created the kamado market in 2015).
You can cook in it meat, fish, seafoodvegetables, fruitsto cook breadenter pizza. The controlled cooking, with charcoal, gives flavors to all the ingredients, perfectly respected during cooking.
Another advantage of the kamado: the closed firing means thatno smoke is emitted, except when switched on for a few minutes. “ The oven format is more interesting than the traditional barbecue: it prevents the development of carcinogenic molecules (glycation phenomenon) and better preserves the nutritional qualities of food, especially vitamins says Raphaël Gruman*, dietitian-nutritionist (in Paris and Deauville).
How to choose your kamado?
When you buy a kamado, make sure it has air diffusers. heat. It is also important to assess the quality and density of the ceramic. Avoid those made of cast aluminum or double-walled steel. Only charcoal should be used for fuel.
” For even more flavor and personality, you can add wood essence shavings or larger pieces according to your tastes. Simply soak them in cold water before adding them to the charcoal, so that they release their essences and delicately flavor the dishes. “, advises Floriane Ravard.
At the level of ingredients, it is important to choose the ones that will give you the best results. To cook beef, prefer beef brisket, scoter, lower ribs which offer more interesting textures and flavors than those of the first choice cuts (lodging of walnuts, entrecote…).
The ideal piece of pork for kamado is the shoulder. Chicken thighs are the easiest cuts to cook on the Japanese barbecue, but you can also cook a whole chicken there.
As for fish, the ideal is to choose thick pieces of fish, scaled but with skin and bones or a whole fish. Steaks, ribs, chicken and fish taste even better if you salt them first. Dry brining involves salting these foods well before cooking, ideally overnight and in the refrigerator. Crispness guaranteed after a passage on the grill!
Source: James Whetlor, Kamado Cooking with Big Green EggEditions Solar, April 2023
*Thanks to Raphaël Gruman, nutritionist (www.lamethodegruman.com)