Various kinds of wood are suitable for grilling and smoking food. In general, hardwoods have a better burning quality and provide more heat than softwoods. In addition to adding flavor to foods, hardwoods produce a distinct aroma as they burn. Softwoods burn quickly, and smoke often imparts an undesirable flavor to food.
People are not familiar with the aroma of mulberry wood smoke because it is not very common everywhere. Check out our mulberry guide for more information.
Is mulberry a hard or softwood?
Mulberry trees shed their leaves in the fall, considered hardwoods, except for a few exceptions. The wood is soft but is considered hardwood because it sheds its leaves.
In many regions, mulberry wood is difficult to find, and its price can be much higher than other smoking woods. It has a very pleasant, sweet, fruity smoke flavor similar to apple wood, so it’s perfect for smoking meat.
Although you might not think of mulberry as one of the top smoke woods when considering the top fruits, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by its sweet, fruity taste if you have some lying around.
In much the same way as other fruitwoods, mulberry wood imparts a sweet smokey flavor to the meat. Burning mulberry wood produces smoke with an apple-like smell. The flavor imparts to poultry, fish, and pork is excellent.
Mulberry trees that bear fruit make the most desirable smoke wood. Additionally, if the tree bears sweet fruit, its wood is better for smoking food.
All four mulberry species (Morus citrifolia, Morus rubra, Morus nigra, and Morus alba) display color, hardness, and fragrance, making them highly desirable for many wood-related applications.
Red mulberry wood, unlike white, often appears orange when freshly cut. The color changes to brown after cutting both types of wood. The pale-yellow color of white mulberry made it the preferred wood for veneers during the 17th and 18th centuries.
Smokers appreciate the mild flavor of yellow-hued mulberry wood.
Can you smoke meat with mulberry wood?
Mulberry is commonly used to smoke meat, especially pork cuts like pork shoulder and pork loin. Other foods you may smoke with mulberries include poultry, wild game birds, beef, wild game, and fish. Smoking chicken with mulberry gives it a pleasantly sweet, citrusy, and tangy flavor.
Along with apple woods, Mulberry is what pork needs to bring out a sweet tangy flavor.
Smoked ribs using mulberry are surprisingly delicious and are perfect for people who don’t enjoy hickory’s bacony, earthy flavor. Even so, it’s such a mild-tasting wood; you can use it for any kind of meat. Some people even smoke lamb using mulberry.
It adds some tanginess to the strong flavors of lamb and red meat, so it’s a terrific substitute for apples. As the smoke is not strong, it doesn’t overpower the meat.
Mulberries are mild, so they are also good with fish and seafood. All types of fish and seafood pair well with the fruity flavor of this sauce.
What is mulberry wood good for
The edible fruit of the Mulberry species is perhaps best known. Mulberry leaves (Morus alba) are also a significant food source for the silkworm (Bombyx mori), which generates silk.
Mulberry wood is commonly used to make furniture and fence posts. It’s a great material for making furniture because it’s durable and strong.
It does not make good firewood because it crackles and pops too much. Also, it causes sneezing and watery eyes, which is not good for allergy sufferers.
You can also use it to smoke meat and other food because it gives off a pleasant fruity wood smoke flavor.
To smoke, what would Mulberry wood pair well with?
As with other fruit trees, Mulberry can also be mixed with stronger smoke woods. It blends well with earthier woods.
Mulberry and hickory make the perfect combination for all types of meat. It has an earthy, smokey flavor with hickory smoke and tangy-sweet mulberry. This combo will result in a slightly sweet smoke with an earthy scent ideal for ribs, brisket, whole chicken, and larger birds like turkey.
Mulberry is rich in flavor, but if you aren’t a fan, you can add other lighter woods, such as neutral alder or maple. Besides the sweetness, the smoke will also smell nutty and hint at citrus.
Combining mulberry and applewood, for instance, is a bit pointless since the flavors of the smoke are so similar that you won’t notice the difference.
Seasoning Mulberry Wood: Tips and Tricks
1. Properly split them
Split mulberry wood dries very fast.
Drying logs takes a very long time. Aside from reducing them to manageable pieces, splitting them makes them easy to fit in your wood stove.
A mulberry log should be split to expose a larger surface area to the wind and sun, which are the primary mechanisms for drying.
2. Use an elevated store for the split wood
The extra effort is worth it here, even if it does require more time. It would be possible to stack the split mulberry pieces on pallets or planks. Increasing airflow between wood pieces is the goal. It will result in a greatly accelerated drying process.
3. Stack Them Properly
It is most effective to stack mulberry wood in an area that receives enough sunlight and has adequate airflow. If possible, keep the stacks away from buildings that shade them. Additionally, make sure the face of the stack faces the direction of the breeze.
4. Cover them
Whenever it snows or rains, this will drain. Make sure that you don’t block air circulation by placing the cover over the stack from the sides. It could cause it to trap moisture and take a long time to dry.
Mulberry Vs. Other Wood
For smoking, Mulberry wood is a great choice. Is it any different from other wood types? Continue reading to learn how mulberry differs from other woods.
1. Heat Output
The density of mulberry wood makes it more efficient than other woods, leading to a higher heat value. The amount of heat it produces is huge compared to ash, which is most often used as a fuel. Consequently, mulberry can save you a lot of fuel.
Mulberry is right in the middle when it comes to smoke. A mulberry wood fire produces more smoke than oak or ash. Despite this, it doesn’t exude much of it. Its sweet odor helps to balance this out.
In comparison to pine and hard maple, mulberry produces less smoke. Furthermore, high smoke production in your mulberry wood is a clear indicator of not being properly seasoned.
The smell of burning Mulberry is quite sweet, so people love it when it is burned. Cherry and hickory are both great smoking agents because of their scents.
Although mulberry smells less pleasant than cherry or hickory, it is a superior wood fuel compared with other types. The smell of some wood fuels, such as Elm and Buckeye, can cause discomfort and irritation. We still recommend Mulberry.
Burning wood releases creosote, a black tar. Each type of wood produces creosote, but their quantities vary. Burning pine produces large amounts of creosote. Make sure that you season your wood properly. Wet wood releases a lot of creosote. Seasoning reduces creosote release.
Creosote levels in mulberry are in the middle of the spectrum. Seasoning can greatly reduce the effect of creosote.
Just to sum things up
Mulberry is an excellent choice for imparting flavor to meat since it’s a relatively mild wood with a wonderful sweet, tangy smoking flavor.
Therefore, if you’re considering taking down that mulberry tree in your backyard, you can be confident that you’ll be able to use the wood for smoking meat. Mulberry wood is an excellent smoke wood if you are tired of using your favorite wood species.