tea-smoking on your grill

Joined Jul 30, 2007
has anyone done this?...apparently its an ancient chinese method where instead of wood to flavor food, you make up a foil packet(not ancient) with loose tea leaves, raw rice, spices and brown sugar to infuse your grilled food...salmon, chicken, duck, shrimp....jasmine, oolong or green along with coriander or star anise or cinnamon sticks...depending on what you're grilling and what subtle flavors you may want... there are no hard and fast rules here...its whatever your palate and protein dictate....you put the packet on the hot charcoal( do people still use that stuff), or on a metal burner shield and close the top and let the grill 'smoke up'...then you put your protein on and smoke/grill it...i haven't done it, but i am very intrigued by the whole thing...its a lazy/poor mans smokers, that doesn't require all the time, effort and expense of having a real smoker.....if you have done this, what have you done?



Staff member
Joined Mar 29, 2002
A wok is the traditional method. Cameroon stovetop smokers do this well too.

I've done it in a wok, and scorched a backsplash doing (an old formica type). Can make a mess of your wok so line it with some heavy duty aluminum foil.
Joined Apr 21, 2009
I did a duck once for a client. years ago. Charcoal divided to two sides, foil pan in the middle with a lid, so the duck wasn't over direct heat and the grease wouldn't drip on the tea leaves. While the recipe called for packed green leaves, I soaked dried leaved overnight in cold water and used that. Had to replace them and the charcoal several times. It smelled delicious. If I remember right, the skin was scored and a pan was used to catch the drippings? It was a while ago. While the texture of the finished product wasn't fabulous, the aroma of the dish was. I would assume better with practice.
Joined Jul 30, 2007
thanks, vorhtex...yeah i think with duck breast you would need to finish in a really hot saute pan for a few minutes to crisp the skin.... was that a whole duck you did? or cut up?

 i can see that as not being so bueno without additional crispying....did you eat it and how was the taste?

thanks for answering...

Joined Aug 21, 2004
Here is a dish I have done in the past. I used to score the skin and sear before smoking.

Tea Smoked Duck,  a duck breast seasoned with garam masala, then smoked over Earl Grey tea, thinly sliced, served with a grilled pineapple, christophene, and toasted coconut relish and drizzled with a lightly curried pineapple sauce
Joined Aug 21, 2009
I've never heard of that method before but it does sound like something I'd like to try.  I still bbq using charcoal and I bet the tea would add an interesting flavour to the meat. 

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