Tag Archives: Camerons Stovetop Smoker


Our local farmers market stays open all year, but only now have the growers occupied their open-air stalls. There is still wind and cold weather, so about the only things available are greens and a few root vegetables. One exception to that is the beautiful trumpet mushrooms available from the  “mushroom man”. If you are like me, you wind up buying way more from the vendors than you can possibly use. I try to plan daily menus in my mind as I walk down the aisles. Invariably, my eyes and appetite fail me so that when the end of the week and a new farmers market arrives, there are things still in the vegetable crisper. The trumpet mushrooms fell into that category this week, so when I looked in the pantry and saw a container of Arborio rice, I immediately thought of risotto. I also wanted to try a new brand of boxed fish stock as well as Better Than Bouillon fish stock base suggested by my friend, Jim Hastings. It seemed like a perfect excuse for shrimp risotto. On top of all that, the stove top smoker was still sitting on the kitchen counter after my effort at smoked new potatoes, so the stars just seemed to come together for smoked shrimp with mushroom risotto.


Oak-Smoked Shrimp


  • ¼ cup smoking chips
  • 6 large (10-15/pound) per person
  • Old Bay seasoning
  • salt and pepper


  1. Prepare stove top smoker by heaping special wood chips in the middle of the smoking pan. Cover the tray with aluminum foil to make cleanup easier and insert, along with rack in the smoker.
  2. Skewer 6 shrimp. Sprinkle with Old Bay seasoning, salt, and pepper. Place on the smoker rack, and close the top, leaving an opening of about 3 inches.
  3. Place the smoker over two burners of the kitchen range, both set to medium flame.
  4. When smoke begins to come out of the lid opening, close tightly and smoke for 20 minutes.
  5. Remove the smoker from the stove, open the lid, and remove the shrimp.If they do not appear to be done, replace the smoker lid and place over the flame for another 5 minutes.

Trumpet Mushroom Risotto


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ cup shallot finely chopped
  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • 2 quarts seafood stock made by dissolving 2 teaspoons Better than Bouillon fish stock base in 2 quarts water (or use canned fish stock or your own home-made fish stock diluted 1:4 with water)
  • 1 pint container of trumpet mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a medium sauce pan with lid, heat the oil over a medium-low flame. Add the shallots and sweat, covered, for about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the rice, and raise the flame to medium, stirring constantly until the rice becomes opaque but does not brown.
  3. In the meantime, bring the fish stock to the simmer over another flame.
  4. Add one ladleful of stock to the shallot-rice mixture and raise the heat to bring to the boil.
  5. Stir frequently (constantly) until the liquid has almost completely evaporated. Then add another ladleful of the stock and again stir until nearly evaporated. Repeat the process until the fish stock is used up or the rice is creamy and tender, about 30 – 40 minutes  . If you need more liquid to finish cooking the rice, use water.
  6. In the meantime, melt the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and sauté for 5 minutes. Set aside.
  7. When you are ready to serve, stir the mushrooms into the risotto. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Top with the smoked shrimp and serve. There should be enough risotto for 2 to 4 persons, depending upon hunger.


Filed under Food, Photography, Recipes


Here’s another idea I lifted from Bar Tartine. Their smoked potatoes with black garlic are unique and delicious. I couldn’t possibly replicate them at home. First, because I don’t have black garlic, and second, I don’t have a clue as to how they smoke their potatoes. As to the black garlic, you can order it from Blackgarlic.com in Hollister, CA, near the garlic capital of the world – Gilroy.

Still, an effort was worth a try, especially if I dragged out my Camerons Stovetop Smoker. The smoker is one of the niftiest things in my batterie de cuisine even though I don’t use it that much. With it, I can hot smoke fish, poultry, meat, and anything else you can fit into it without filling the house with smoke. The smoker is available from the manufacturer, Amazon, kitchen stores, and several big-box retailers for under $60.

Camerons also sells wood chips specially sized for the smoker. The wood chips that you find in the barbecuing section of the grocery store are too big. But Camerons gives you a choice of apple, alder, cherry, hickory, maple, mesquite, oak, pecan, and even corn cob. I used alder, and I think it was a good choice.

As a substitute for the black garlic, I smoked fresh garlic with the potatoes in the hope that it would caramelize and then used for an aïoli. That turned out to be reasonably successful.


Smoked New Potatoes


  • 1/3 cup special smoker wood chips
  • 6-8 small new red potatoes for each diner, well-scrubbed
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • coarse Kosher salt


  1. Prepare the smoker by placing the wood chips in the center of the bottom of the smoker. Line the tray with aluminum foil, and arrange it and the rack in the smoker.
  2. Arrange the potatoes on the rack with the garlic in a small aluminum foil nest in the center (see below)
  3. With a brush, lightly baste each of the potatoes on all sides and sprinkle generously with the salt.
  4. Slide the cover onto the smoker, leaving a 3 inch opening. Place over medium heat on the stove top. When smoke begins to come out of the opening, close to form a tight seal. You will be able to smell the smoke, and you may see a faint wisp, but there should be no smoke coming out of the sealed smoker.
  5. Roast for 45 minutes. Remove the smoker from the heat, and open the top.
  6. Transfer the potatoes to a serving bowl

Caramelized Garlic Aïoli


  • 6 cloves of garlic, peeled and stems removed
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Crumple a sheet of aluminum foil into a small “nest” large enough to hold the garlic. Set the nest in the center of the potatoes on the smoker rack.
  2. Smoke according to directions above.
  3. When the potatoes are smoked, transfer the garlic to a small bowl and mash with a fork or pass through a garlic press.
  4. Stir in the mayonnaise and lemon juice. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper
  5. Serve as a dip with the potatoes.


Filed under Food, Photography, Recipes, Restaurants