Grilling is about cooking hot and fast. Smoking, however, requires time and patience: it’s done low (around 180 to 235°F), and slow. “The key is to contain the heat and smoke, and control the airflow and fire so you can maintain a low term temperature,” says Ted Reader, a Toronto-based chef and author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Smoking Foods.
With 65 grills and smokers in his backyard, Reader knows what he’s talking about. He says you can make a smoker out of anything from a clay pot to a filing cabinet, but the easiest approach is to use your barbecue.