There are few culinary techniques more evocative than smoking. It can conjure images of backyard barbecues, slowly sizzling Southern smoke pits and succulent protein falling off the bone. While smoking is a common means of meat preservation found in most cultures, Americans have made it their own, as every summer they fearlessly fire up their grills. Chain menus follow suit, and there’s a marked upturn in the number of barbecue promotions offered during the warm-weather months. But smoking ...

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