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Adding a smoky flavor to foods can make a dish memorable. Today’s St. Louis Post-Dispatch Let’s Eat features a salad dressing made with smoked onions. Of course, you could just eat the smoked onions by themselves as they are a wonderful condiment. Their Caesar salad dressing recipe calls for pureeing the smoked onions with mayonnaise.

One of our popular instructors, Jack MacMurray, once taught a recipe that students are still raving about: sensational smoked onions that were then deep-fried. Don’t miss chef Jack’s upcoming cooking classes on March 15, April 26, and May 24.

Smoking foods is not just for the summertime and not just for professionals. Anyone can easily and quickly smoke foods inside in a home kitchen using the stovetop smoker. Beef, pork, chicken, sausage, fish, shellfish, vegetables, and cheese are all delicious when smoked.

Brush up on your smoking skills with our upcoming cooking class on Wednesday, March 16 on how to use the stovetop smoker, Up In Smoke, taught by Barb Nack. Her menu includes the amazingly delicious smoked tuna, perhaps the best way to cook tuna.Here is a smoked shrimp recipe that was a hit in a recent cooking class:

Smoked Shrimp-Avocado-Watercress Salad
1 pound extra-large shrimp in the shell (16-20 count)

To smoke the shrimp, place a tablespoon of smoking dust (cherry, apple, maple, or pecan are my favorite flavors) in the bottom of a stovetop smoker. On the rack, place the shrimp. Place the probe thermometer in one of the shrimp. Secure the lid. Place the smoker on high heat until smoke appears. Turn down the heat to low. Monitor the internal temperature of the smoker (should be about 150 degrees) and smoke until the shrimp reaches an internal temperature of 120 degrees. Remove the lid. Peel and devein the shrimp. Toss with dressing.

for the dressing:

  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise (make your own with our Mayo Clinic)
  • 3 tablespoons yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
  • 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice

Mix together mayonnaise, yogurt, hot sauce, lime and toss with shrimp.

For the salad:

  • 1 bunch watercress, chopped
  • 1 avocado, peeled and cubed
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and cubed
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onion

Arrange the watercress, avocado, cucumber, cilantro, and onion. Toss with vinaigrette and top with shrimp.

For the vinaigrette:

  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Whisk together garlic, lime, oil, salt and pepper. Dress the greens.