I wanted to share something with you all.
The following is e-mail exchange between the folks at Smokinlicious and myself.
Cliff H. here,
I am one of the BBQ Central regulars.
I have a load of cherry wood that I intend to use for smoking meat
once it is seasoned but I seem to be confused as to whether or not
this type of cherry tree will be good for bbq or not.
Could you please look at this thread and view the pics and tell me if
this wood is ok for smoking meat.
It is a fruit tree for sure. I have verified that much. It looks like
a larger version of the cherry tree I have in my yard. There is a pic
of that tree also.
OK - I believe you have a Chokecherry tree, scientific name Prunus
Virginiana L. I am basing this opinion on the bark coloring and the
pattern of the wood. This tree is part of the Rosaceae or Rose family.
Regarding use of this wood for smoking or natural grilling, it would be
best to remove all the bark and attempt to get at the pure heartwood of
the logs. The only real toxicity risk to humans with this tree is the
leaves. That can cause some skin issues.
Please note that Chokecherry is not as sweet as Black Cherry, Rum
or Wild Red Cherry. You will need to experiment on whether you will
to mix this wood with a sweeter wood in order to get the flavor you
desire. Experiment! It won't hurt.
Now, regarding your comment to let the wood "season" - don't! Unless
are intending to only cook at higher temperatures, by allowing the wood
sit and lose moisture, you will be left with a highly flammable wood.
am making the assumption that you may want to smoke with the wood. If
attempt to rid the wood of the bark, get at the premium wood core, and
cut into the chunk or log sizes that you can use. Store any unused
in a cool, dry location that is away from direct sunlight.
Hope all this information helps with your decision. Provide me with
feedback on the flavor result. We love tracking different species from
around the world.
Thanks for the question and for providing the pictures!
With your permission, I would like to make your response public on
the bbq central forum.
You have my permission to post this response. Hope it helps others who
might have varieties of cherry wood available.
These folks are the CSI team of the bbq wood world.
" Never let a day go by "