BRADLEY SMOKER | "Taste the Great Outdoors"

Recipe Discussions => Vegetables, Cheese, Nuts => Topic started by: pz on July 13, 2013, 10:15:27 pm

Title: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 13, 2013, 10:15:27 pm
This is my first time smoking cheese, and my attempt is due largely to the many posts on the forum regarding successful cheese smoking.  I have one 2-pound block of Costco mild cheddar, and two wedges of Costco Gouda for my first run.  I've used only a small amount of cheese because I didn't want to risk ruining a large quantity of cheese.  ;).  The cheese is loaded in the top rack, and I'm using pecan pucks.  My plan was to smoke for three hours.  The fact that I don't want to temperature to go much above 90F gives us an excuse to baby sit the smoker  ;D

[Click image to zoom]
(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-Lm3afj0bIlo/UeItkzELlFI/AAAAAAAACks/wt4_92TSGrY/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1606.JPG)

After loading the cheese into the smoker, it was time to have lunch (it was around 1pm my time).  The sandwiches are made using smoked corned beef that I made yesterday (http://forum.bradleysmoker.com/index.php?topic=32768.msg382676#msg382676).  My wife made the crusty European style bread, and the home made aioli containing mayo, pickles, horseradish, catsup, pickle juice, smoked paprika, sweet onion, and parsley.
(https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-kqBphA39Als/UeItlhM54UI/AAAAAAAACkc/tzjX5SvYsvU/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1608.JPG)

Although you can't see it too well, the smoke is pouring out the top of the vent.
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-Vdjk-TN2a4E/UeItotEvPnI/AAAAAAAAClM/LC71_bqFEBs/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1613.JPG)

After an hour, the cheese began to develop color
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-nssFSki0F-k/UeItpIpj05I/AAAAAAAAClQ/mth6HW4UOOI/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1614.JPG)

At a little over two hours I decided to take the cheese out of the smoker because the temperature was climbing over 100F and I was concerned that they might melt. There were oily droplets that were sweating out of the cheese.
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-d5YkbnDUrNU/UeItpiX_4fI/AAAAAAAAClY/ImnLkn-QfbA/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1619.JPG)

After a couple of hours cooling, the cheese was ready to seal using a Foodsaver.  However, I could not resist and cut a chunk to taste.  Although the smoke was strong, the cheese was delicious, and had a smoky taste that you cannot get from store-bought smoked cheese.  I can't wait to age the cheese for a few weeks and see how it tastes.
(https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-3OkwJzfxoeg/UeItqo2HvaI/AAAAAAAAClk/9YPsPD0_Dhg/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1621.JPG)

Are the oily droplets a bad sign that I did something wrong?  I'm thinking that I'll get the cold smoke accessory so I can reduce the heat in the main box a bit more.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Ka Honu on July 14, 2013, 06:47:07 am
Looks good.  Two hours is usually enough smoke for me on cheese so I don't think you missed anything by pulling early.  I also find it easier to cut the blocks into smaller chunks (usually 8-12 ounces each) before smoking since I think the increased surface area takes on the smoke better and we rarely need a full two pound slab open for serving at a time.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Saber 4 on July 14, 2013, 06:53:29 am
This is definitely going on my list of winter smokes since it's been over 100 degrees every day this week in Texas, Although I may have to try it sooner with the tray of ice method of cooling the smoker.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Salmonsmoker on July 14, 2013, 07:19:42 am
Nice smoke pz, it's best to keep your smoker under 90F for cheese so you don't lose those oils and have your cheese start to melt. Placing a container of ice in the smoker will help keep the temp. down  on those warmer days. Like Ka Honu, I slice up big blocks of cheese like 5# bricks of Tillamook etc. into 2" thick slices for good smoke penetration. I've even smoked cream cheese (which is delicious by the way) by keeping the smoker temp. cool.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 14, 2013, 09:02:10 am
Thanks for the comments, guys.  ;)  The ice tray technique sounds like a good one, and I'm sure would have kept my temperature below 100F.  I also like the idea of cutting the blocks into 2-inch thick chunks for better smoke penetration (my wife suggested that just as soon as she saw the big block)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pokermeister on July 14, 2013, 11:56:55 am
I have used a gal milk jug w/ frozen water and placed it on the drip tray. Works well in Vegas with daytime temps above 105. Smoker did not get above 75. You also have to remove the bottom rack.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 14, 2013, 07:09:03 pm
I have used a gal milk jug w/ frozen water and placed it on the drip tray. Works well in Vegas with daytime temps above 105. Smoker did not get above 75. You also have to remove the bottom rack.

Excellent idea; I have a chest freezer in my garage that would hold plastic jugs just perfectly. 
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 15, 2013, 10:22:30 pm
Well, I'm happy to report that my wife loves the smoked cheese.  We were on the deck this afternoon, and I suggested a couple of bites of cheese and she instantly and emphatically replied "YES!".  She says that the pecan smoke is unlike anything she has ever tasted, and that while she has kind of enjoyed smoked Gouda in the past, this is something completely different, and she keeps nibbling until the current portion is all gone.

I had cut approximately 8 ounces of pecan smoked Gouda before I FoodSaver-ed the rest.  The 8 ounces was intended to last a week or so while we samples a few bits each day to experience the progression of flavor development.  Unfortunately it is now all gone - we ate it all.  Now she's eying the rest...

I suppose this is all good, because she now has reason to approve of all I do with the Bradley  ;D
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Salmonsmoker on July 16, 2013, 07:25:12 am
Good news pz. I looked on the label of some commercially smoked gouda cheese and it said "liquid smoke". That may be why it was completely different.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: fuzzy1 on July 16, 2013, 10:22:17 am
Good job PZ. Smoked gouda is one of my favorites too.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 16, 2013, 01:10:21 pm
Good news pz. I looked on the label of some commercially smoked gouda cheese and it said "liquid smoke". That may be why it was completely different.

I'm not surprised Salmonsmoker; I am never surprised by what I see on labels, just astounded that the manufacturers try to pull the wool of consumer's eyes.

Good job PZ. Smoked gouda is one of my favorites too.

Thanks fuzzy1; the Gouda is so good, I'm almost hesitant to try the cheddar for fear that it will not compare.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 16, 2013, 08:58:31 pm

Now working on the second of our two corned beef briskets (almost gone).  Had to open the next sealed package of Gouda; my sweetie insisted  ;)

(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-p8K0dy3xyEA/UeYURVAbZeI/AAAAAAAACqk/rYUF1hXEKpU/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1640.JPG)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Tenpoint5 on July 17, 2013, 07:38:32 am
The Swiss is going to taste Nasty if your eating it 2-3 days after smoking it. The harder or should we say more dense the cheese. The longer it takes for the smoke to flavor to sink in and equal out. Most will recommend waiting 3-4 weeks minimum before tasting any of the harder cheeses. I usually go 2-3 months before I open any of my vac sealed cheeses.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 17, 2013, 09:41:02 am
Thanks Tenpoint5; after reading many of the smoked cheese posts, I thought that the softer the cheese, the quicker the permeation of the smoke and equilibration of the flavors.  Makes sense - the harder the cheese the longer it takes to equilibrate.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 17, 2013, 11:57:39 am
First off, your cutting board is amazing PZ!!!!

After looking at your Cheese, this is something I'm totally going to try.

The quick trick of frozen water is a great idea to use since it looks as
though my BDS runs hot. 

2hr of Pecan Smoke w/ Munster
Vac Seal it
Taste in a week. (if I can hold off :-[)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 17, 2013, 01:23:34 pm
First off, your cutting board is amazing PZ!!!!

After looking at your Cheese, this is something I'm totally going to try.

The quick trick of frozen water is a great idea to use since it looks as
though my BDS runs hot. 

2hr of Pecan Smoke w/ Munster
Vac Seal it
Taste in a week. (if I can hold off :-[)

Thanks rveal23!  My boy gave me that board for Christmas a couple of years ago because my wife gave me the Shun Santoku hand made knife.  Evidently the end grain boards are easier on the knife edge.

I'm definitely going to try the ice  recommendation to keep the temperatures down, and continue to use the pecan wood - my wife can't get enough of that smoked Gouda and now continues to let me experiment - she didn't even fuss that I ordered the PID last night!  ;D
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: KyNola on July 17, 2013, 02:10:18 pm
If you are going to use ice to keep the temp down you may want to consider placing it to the far right hand side of the tower as the cold air can hinder the smoking in rising.  If I use ice I put it in a ziplock bag so that as the ice melts the moisture won't be released and travel up to and settle on the cheese.

Others may have a different method and if they do, use theirs.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 17, 2013, 02:18:08 pm
First off, your cutting board is amazing PZ!!!!

After looking at your Cheese, this is something I'm totally going to try.

The quick trick of frozen water is a great idea to use since it looks as
though my BDS runs hot. 

2hr of Pecan Smoke w/ Munster
Vac Seal it
Taste in a week. (if I can hold off :-[)

Thanks rveal23!  My boy gave me that board for Christmas a couple of years ago because my wife gave me the Shun Santoku hand made knife.  Evidently the end grain boards are easier on the knife edge.

I'm definitely going to try the ice  recommendation to keep the temperatures down, and continue to use the pecan wood - my wife can't get enough of that smoked Gouda and now continues to let me experiment - she didn't even fuss that I ordered the PID last night!  ;D

@ PZ - Completely understand about The Shun Knives, I have several myself and they are my precious babies that Only I can use!  ;)

I'm trying to play it smooth so I can order my temp control soon, but when I'm stocking up on Bisquettes , it's going to take time for me to get the OK from the boss!

@ KyNola - That's great advice will make sure I make that adjustment when I smoke the cheese. Time for a Costco Run!
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Ka Honu on July 17, 2013, 03:12:27 pm
...it's going to take time for me to get the OK from the boss!

It's much easier to beg for forgiveness than permission.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 17, 2013, 03:29:00 pm
...it's going to take time for me to get the OK from the boss!

It's much easier to beg for forgiveness than permission.
@ Ka Honu - Not when your wife is taking care of your first New Born Baby, is exhausted and is Mexican/Cuban Decent.   :-\ Hahahaha  J/K she is the best, she would have no prob. but I rather not push my luck.  :-X
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Saber 4 on July 17, 2013, 04:05:03 pm
Tread softly and keep her well fed.... ;D
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 17, 2013, 04:49:19 pm
...  If I use ice I put it in a ziplock bag so that as the ice melts the moisture won't be released and travel up to and settle on the cheese.

Excellent idea; had not thought of the extra moisture gumming things up

@ PZ - Completely understand about The Shun Knives, I have several myself and they are my precious babies that Only I can use!  ;)

I'm trying to play it smooth so I can order my temp control soon, but when I'm stocking up on Bisquettes , it's going to take time for me to get the OK from the boss!

lol, same here; no one touches my Shun!

I thought about stocking up on pucks, but then, I wanted the PID.  While I can smoke without the PID, I cannot smoke without the pucks.  I imagined a scenario like this: [me] "sorry sweetie; I ran out of pucks!" [the boss] "Darn, I wanted more of that smoked cheese so you'd better go out and get a box... but just one!"

So, my logic is to get the PID knowing that the boss will want me to go out and get the pucks anyway  ;D
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 17, 2013, 11:23:44 pm
lol, I just have to post this story which just now happened.  History: my wife and I went to Cabelas to get a package of 48 pecan pucks for smoking the cheese several days ago - we saw the 120 count packages of hickory, but no other flavors. I told her that I thought I remembered the package costing $69, and she replied that she recalled the same.  I told her about the deal that rveal23 posted a while ago (http://forum.bradleysmoker.com/index.php?topic=32809.msg383084#msg383084) in which he reported that you can get the 120 count packages for $39 plus change.  Even though I had just purchased the PID from Auber (spent nearly $200), she replied "Wow, you'd better get online and get some of those packages!"

I think my plan worked  ::)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 18, 2013, 12:35:14 am
PZ exactly what you had told me was going to happen. Congrats!  I should have played it the same way. My wife loves her smoked meats. She would have caved. Now it's time to kiss butt and hope I can order my temp controller soon.

I smoked some cheese tonight and all my temps were reading +10 above what the display was showing me on my BDS, so it was going over 100 degrees @ times.

I added cold water to my bowl and then added another bowl full of ice and water to try to keep the temp below 90 And even then I struggled. My cheese started to sweat so I pulled it after 1hr of smoking with Cherry.  I can believe that I was breaking over 100 on my top shelf with only the smoker on.

I'm not sure what else I can do besides get a temp control.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 18, 2013, 12:44:28 am
Thanks rveal23!  I had to laugh internally as my boss told me to purchase the pucks, and the only tough part was not letting her know anything was amiss.  Unfortunately I do not think a temperature control will work so well for the low temperatures required for cold smoking after I read the specs of the Auber PID (minimum temp control=40F above ambient with smoke generator on).  However, the Ziplock bag of ice trick posted by KyNola sounds like a good solution, and once I build some kind of cold smoke isolator, the cheese and lox I plan to smoke should be good, especially as we head into the cooler fall ambient temperatures.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Tenpoint5 on July 18, 2013, 07:47:45 am
At the risk of sounding like a smart a...... you guys could always make or buy a cold smoke adapter. They work perfectly when doing cheese
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 18, 2013, 09:13:13 am
At the risk of sounding like a smart a...... you guys could always make or buy a cold smoke adapter. They work perfectly when doing cheese

@ Tenpoint -  :( , ya you are aboslutly correct, but I like to tinker first then fall back if I can't figure it out. But it is the challenge of it for me.   :P
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 18, 2013, 09:19:35 am
At the risk of sounding like a smart a...... you guys could always make or buy a cold smoke adapter. They work perfectly when doing cheese

Exactly my plan Tenpoint5 - I saw somewhere on the forum where a member built one out of a mailbox.  I'd like to try to find something creative like that
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: KyNola on July 18, 2013, 09:34:07 am
A cardboard box and dryer vent hose will work just fine too.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: tskeeter on July 18, 2013, 09:38:10 am
At the risk of sounding like a smart a...... you guys could always make or buy a cold smoke adapter. They work perfectly when doing cheese

Exactly my plan Tenpoint5 - I saw somewhere on the forum where a member built one out of a mailbox.  I'd like to try to find something creative like that

Some forum members have even used a simple cardboard box for a cold smoke chamber.  Because the puck burner isn't close to the cardboard, the chance of starting a fire is pretty limited as long as you keep the materials you are using in mind and are careful when you set things up.  A box and some dryer vent.  It doesn't get much more basic.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Salmonsmoker on July 20, 2013, 08:21:54 am
 My first cold smoke adapter was a cardboard box and dryer vent hose. Worked fine. One forum member cut openings in a non-working microwave oven for the smoke generator and dryer vent hose. Said it worked great.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 20, 2013, 10:16:14 pm
Thanks for the tips  ;)

Just finished smoking Canadian bacon using Habanero Smoker's recipe, and although it states to wrap for a couple of days before eating, I had to save a piece for eating right now.  I'm enjoying small slices of the Canadian bacon atop small slices of the smoked Gouda I made earlier in the week - life is good.

It sure is fun eating foods that you've had a hand in making  :)

As we head into the end of summer, my plan is to use the tomatoes we have growing next to the pizza oven, the fresh basil in the base of the planter, smoked Canadian bacon, and smoked cheese  to make some really tasty wood-fired pizza treats.

You know the old saying that goes "food always tastes better outdoors".  Well, that goes double for food that you've smoked yourself.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 20, 2013, 11:24:35 pm
Thanks for the tips  ;)

Just finished smoking Canadian bacon using Habanero Smoker's recipe, and although it states to wrap for a couple of days before eating, I had to save a piece for eating right now.  I'm enjoying small slices of the Canadian bacon atop small slices of the smoked Gouda I made earlier in the week - life is good.

It sure is fun eating foods that you've had a hand in making  :)

As we head into the end of summer, my plan is to use the tomatoes we have growing next to the pizza oven, the fresh basil in the base of the planter, smoked Canadian bacon, and smoked cheese  to make some really tasty wood-fired pizza treats.

You know the old saying that goes "food always tastes better outdoors".  Well, that goes double for food that you've smoked yourself.

Living the good retirement life!  All that food sounds great!
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 21, 2013, 12:05:39 am
Thanks!  You know, the really fun part is thinking about all the good smoked food that is to come  :D
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 21, 2013, 09:16:43 pm
Here's my first attempt at Canadian bacon - used pecan, which turned out to be really good

(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-AVorp7CdC5I/UeyxFFrgFtI/AAAAAAAACtg/7H9jV0-ag60/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1650.JPG)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Saber 4 on July 22, 2013, 08:53:08 am
looks real good, when I did mine I cut my loin into 3 pieces about 3 lbs each so it was easier to slice. Can't wait to see the sliced pics and how it tasted.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 22, 2013, 12:32:15 pm
Thanks Saber 4; I'm planning on opening a package later today, which marks the two day resting period.  I brought the internal temperature to 140F due to Habanero Smoker's recommendation on the recipe page.  He reported that the meat has better moisture at that temperature.  I'll post pics!  :)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 22, 2013, 01:07:47 pm
Shoot, I have two Pork Loins sitting in the Fridge, one will be to fine dine my wifey, and I can use the second one to do CANADIAN BACON aye.

She loves Bacon!
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 22, 2013, 03:11:02 pm
lol, it is really cute; my wife is loving the smoked products so much it is difficult to keep her from opening the packages prematurely We're now working our way through the second smoked Gouda wedge (the big kind from Costco), and she plans on opening the block of smoked cheddar this afternoon for grilling hamburgers because she simply cannot wait to taste it.

It is becoming easier to sell her on new things I need for smoking.  :)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 22, 2013, 03:32:28 pm
PZ, I know what you mean, I think I will be opening my Vac Sealed cheese today, it's been 5 days since it was smoked. I am dying to taste it.

I figure if I can show my wife different kinds of food, then she will fall into my perfect plan and let me get all the stuff I need when I need it for my smoking.. LOL
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 22, 2013, 03:48:54 pm
Looking forward to your first impressions of the flavor! (and more importantly your wife's)  ;D
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 22, 2013, 07:14:44 pm
I Opened up the Mozzarella Smoked cheese, The Flavor was great to me.  I then melted it on a pulled pork sandwich.
I wasn't sure how it was going to taste, but oh man the flavor was amazing. The smoke flavor would spike when you would
bite it but then mellow out fast and give you a really nice taste.  Enjoyed that pulled pork sandwich.

My wife doesn't like cheese but my mother-in-law dies for it, so she will have to give it a go when she comes around.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 22, 2013, 09:03:15 pm
My wife doesn't like cheese but my mother-in-law dies for it, so she will have to give it a go when she comes around.

'nuff said... your poor wife doesn't stand a chance  ;D

I haven't tried mozzarella but it is definitely on my list.  The way you describe the taste is what I experience with the smoked Gouda.  I'm also planning jalapeno jack cheese and anything else that looks interesting at Costco
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 22, 2013, 09:47:13 pm
We finally had enough smoked product to make a tasty burger.  However, we have run out of our hamburger blend so we used frozen chicken burgers we purchased at Costco.  I've seen better Canadian bacon, but for my first try, I'm really happy with the result.  I can taste the distinct pecan smoke balanced with the ever so slight sweet flavor of the maple syrup.  I also had added sprigs of fresh sage and thyme from the garden into the marinade, so those subtle flavors were also present.  We really enjoyed those burgers.

On an aside, our youngest son came over (hungry of course), and I fixed him a burger.  He was formerly a cook a a local bistro and his spontaneous comment as he was taking his first bite was "Dad... this might be the best burger I have ever tasted!"  He was probably just overly hungry but the compliment made me feel good anyway.  :)



[Click images to zoom - click again to minimize]
Here's my baby right out of the package - has not been cut yet.  The smoky fragrance is mouth watering!     After cutting a few slices, this is how the interior looks.  Might not be the best Canadian bacon I've seen but I'm happy with it since it is my first attempt.  I know they will get better.     I sliced a large mound relatively thin because I intend to make Canadian bacon burgers.
(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-tXK_BIqMkgc/Ue4CnSMXFGI/AAAAAAAACt0/cAVQQCiLbhE/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1652.JPG)
     
(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-w15RjdwTWAo/Ue4CnwB5IRI/AAAAAAAACt8/7VLlJlYDND0/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1653.JPG)
     
(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-tqP0Sn8bdWM/Ue4CopsuPDI/AAAAAAAACuE/memDD_W2pVQ/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1655.JPG)
Although we are using a store bought burger patty, we didn't have any ground ready for burgers and we were really hungry after work.  The plan is to use the smoked products we created in the Bradley (using the fine recipes we found on the recipe site).  Here we have smoked Gouda and thinly sliced Canadian bacon.     The smoked gouda is just beginning to melt, and are now ready for a heaping mound of Canadian bacon.     The burgers are still in the pan, and are smothered in Gouda and Canadian bacon - now ready for the onion and tomato.  As to condiment, I like plain yellow mustard, no ketchup
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-tzG6kLnJqE8/Ue4CpIgbktI/AAAAAAAACuM/mB2cZjqjjOM/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1656.JPG)
     
(https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-wOglliKVcU8/Ue4CpkLJX7I/AAAAAAAACuU/NiC-6BlxR98/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1657.JPG)
     
(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-hmSR-4DY-tk/Ue4CqQB91qI/AAAAAAAACuY/xKBv9HG2njI/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1658.JPG)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Saber 4 on July 23, 2013, 06:22:29 am
looks good to me, you might back your IT down to around 140-145 to keep it from drying out on you
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 23, 2013, 09:11:32 am
PZ, Everything is falling into plan. I asked my Mother-In-law last night if she would like to taste the cheese, and she declined. I asked why and she told me she didn't like how it looked.. LOL I told her to give it a shot. I handed over a slice and she popped it into her mouth. She looked like this --> :o, I asked her if that was a good face or a bad face and she explained its a great face. She loved the cheese, I then told her it was Smoked Mozzarella, and she was taken back since she does not like that cheese. After that I had to keep handing her samples while I cleaned the kitchen. Lucky enough my wife walked in with my baby, and was able to witness the whole thing.  My whole plan is falling into place  bwhahwhahwhahahha  :-X. Soon I will be able to buy everything I need for my smoker.... ;)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 23, 2013, 12:07:17 pm
LOL!!!  ;D

It's great when it works out!
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 23, 2013, 12:09:32 pm
looks good to me, you might back your IT down to around 140-145 to keep it from drying out on you

Funny thing is that I was at 140F internal, but still managed to dry out a bit.  Perhaps it was tenting with foil while resting that allowed the temp to creep upward?
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: tskeeter on July 23, 2013, 01:35:10 pm
looks good to me, you might back your IT down to around 140-145 to keep it from drying out on you

Funny thing is that I was at 140F internal, but still managed to dry out a bit.  Perhaps it was tenting with foil while resting that allowed the temp to creep upward?


Probably the tenting, combined with cutting the loin into smaller pieces.  Smaller pieces = more surface area = more moisture evaporation.

If your next smoke is still a bit dry, you might try spritzing with a very light coat of a light cooking oil, such as canola oil before smoking.  I'd think that might reduce the evaporation a bit and keep the exterior from getting quite so tough.  (I'm going to try this on my next Canadian Bacon smoke.)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 23, 2013, 02:23:43 pm
Thanks for the tips guys. I'll keep plugging away to get it right, but the favor is excellent and at least I can enjoy the practice !  :D
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Saber 4 on July 23, 2013, 05:53:33 pm
looks good to me, you might back your IT down to around 140-145 to keep it from drying out on you

Funny thing is that I was at 140F internal, but still managed to dry out a bit.  Perhaps it was tenting with foil while resting that allowed the temp to creep upward?


Probably the tenting, combined with cutting the loin into smaller pieces.  Smaller pieces = more surface area = more moisture evaporation.

If your next smoke is still a bit dry, you might try spritzing with a very light coat of a light cooking oil, such as canola oil before smoking.  I'd think that might reduce the evaporation a bit and keep the exterior from getting quite so tough.  (I'm going to try this on my next Canadian Bacon smoke.)

Ditto, I think the smaller pieces and the tenting did you in on this one, good news is you can take some cube it up small and mix it in with some eggs and cheese for some awesome breakfast taco's. :)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 23, 2013, 08:37:23 pm
Ditto, I think the smaller pieces and the tenting did you in on this one, good news is you can take some cube it up small and mix it in with some eggs and cheese for some awesome breakfast taco's. :)

That does sound good.  I make a spicy black bean, tomato, corn, and okra stew into which I put some kind of meat - tried little cubes of the Canadian bacon and it is delicious!

However, it is not as dry as the pics would lead one to believe; the flavor is marvelous, and I like eating thin slices as a snack - am doing so as I write - kind of gets me into the spirit of smoking as I peruse the forum  :D
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Saber 4 on July 24, 2013, 06:14:17 am
That stew sounds really good, may have to make a version for us the wife loves black beans.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: tskeeter on July 24, 2013, 09:05:36 am
Thanks for the tips guys. I'll keep plugging away to get it right, but the favor is excellent and at least I can enjoy the practice !  :D


Yup.  That's how I figured out how to make ribs back in my pre-smoker days.  Ribs every weekend for nearly two months.  Different preparation methods.  Different rubs.  Different sauces.  After all the practice, I finally earned my Smoke House Hero badge for ribs. 

Funny, my wife never complained about conducting sensory analysis on all those ribs.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on July 24, 2013, 09:21:16 am
Thanks for the tips guys. I'll keep plugging away to get it right, but the favor is excellent and at least I can enjoy the practice !  :D


Yup.  That's how I figured out how to make ribs back in my pre-smoker days.  Ribs every weekend for nearly two months.  Different preparation methods.  Different rubs.  Different sauces.  After all the practice, I finally earned my Smoke House Hero badge for ribs. 

Funny, my wife never complained about conducting sensory analysis on all those ribs.

When it comes down eating great food, I don't think anyone can complain! Especially if each time it is done it gets better and better!!!
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on July 24, 2013, 10:59:27 am
That stew sounds really good, may have to make a version for us the wife loves black beans.

It is a winner for anyone that likes black beans, and especially for those that love savory, spicy foods.  Here is the basic recipe:

Dump the canned tomato and black bean into a pot and begin to heat.  Add the meat, corn, and okra, then barely cover with beef stock.  Add the spices and bring to a simmer - the aroma will be fantastic, and will bring the kids out of their rooms.  ;D

The flavor is smoky, rich, spicy, and with a bitter bite of the chocolate; this spicy dish will continue to be a favorite of mine

Here's a pic of what I made yesterday:
(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-ir9zycU61aA/UfA0PxcHI_I/AAAAAAAACvg/NP9JZpoWHRQ/w1351-h901-no/IMG_1660.JPG)

Funny, my wife never complained about conducting sensory analysis on all those ribs.

lol, you are so right!  The only issue I can see is rising cholesterol and triglyceride levels!

Title: Second time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on August 03, 2013, 08:40:11 pm
Well, we repositioned the smoker and did some more cheese.  Using pecan, we smoked for 2 hours with the temperature not rising above 95F.  I did not connect the power wire to the smoker to prevent any current from reaching the main heating element.  I learned my lesson from the first cheese smoke and cut these into approximately 2.5-inch thick chunks to get good smoke penetration, but not too much.

Also, ice in the bottom pan proved very helpful to keep the temperature from rising too far.  One of these days I'll purchase some dryer vent and build an isolation box to truly deliver cold smoke.  :)

Here's the cheese list:

Click the images to zoom
(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-F5aE2CScom8/Uf3HhQ94dSI/AAAAAAAACxk/MEiWVWnapKQ/w1310-h874-no/IMG_1675.JPG)

We put the Bradley on the side counter of the grill - it fit perfectly.  It is so much easier to work with the smoker when it is at counter height - no more hands-and-knees!
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-3xFcBWbBWBw/Uf3HiCWIf0I/AAAAAAAACxs/ezWJIjhSFXY/w1310-h874-no/IMG_1676.JPG)

Done smoking: a friend gave me a huge muenster log to smoke and I cut it into 2.5-inch thick pieces - the ends are on the left.  A couple of goat cheese logs are on the right.
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-LjbJqRJednY/Uf3Hj7ZrfCI/AAAAAAAACyE/8a8eTthGX98/w1310-h874-no/IMG_1679.JPG)

The pepper jack is on the left and Gouda on the right.
(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-sqztI9JDVlE/Uf3HkuVzbfI/AAAAAAAACyM/OYDQouQUwMk/w1310-h874-no/IMG_1680.JPG)

We spread a bit of smoked goat cheese on bread my wife baked this morning - it was absolutely delicious.
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-xdcNg0WEzY0/Uf3HlwPz7UI/AAAAAAAACyY/YZ-NLxdMf14/w1310-h874-no/IMG_1682.JPG)
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on August 03, 2013, 10:21:22 pm
I wasn't able to smoke Muenster the last time, so how does it taste smoked? The blocks here in so cal are expensive!  I have to go to SAMs club to get the block to get a good deal.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on August 03, 2013, 10:44:07 pm
The taste is really good, but I think the rind somewhat hindered smoke penetration because the flavor is milder than the other cheeses.  I did not think the rind would cause an issue because it is a simple paprika rub. However, it is a bit early to determine how it will shake out in the long run - until it rests in the fridge for a few weeks.  ;)  Many trim the edible rind off before eating because of the salty nature, but I like it, so left it on.  However, I might trim it off the next time if it has interfered too much with smoke penetration.

The bottom line is that I'll try it again in the future; plain muenster is a bit bland, and even a small amount of smoke gave it a deliciously different flavor.

The pepper jack tastes great right out of the smoker, and I'll be interested in seeing how it mellows out over the next few weeks.

The Gouda is fantastic as it was the first time - still one of my favorites.

The goat cheese was a pleasant surprise; still had the tang that we love, but now with a rich deep pecan smoke flavor.  I'm sure it will be a hit with our friends and family.  We like goat cheese simply spread on bread, or on crackers.  It is also delicious topped with a slice of jalapeno and wrapped with a strip of prosciutto.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on September 19, 2013, 08:54:14 pm
Well, still enjoyin' some of the first cheese we smoked some time ago - baked bread late last night with the intent that we would enjoy it this evening for dinner.

The bread: thyme bread baked late last night
The cheese: Bradley smoked Gouda
The wine: Chilean Carmenere from the Maipo Valley - didn't make this  :D
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-Quf6zerlBjU/Ujuu7a1A0rI/AAAAAAAAD9k/DC5WID0bcGs/w1346-h898-no/IMG_2068.JPG) (https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-8DDYgNHIMQU/Ujuu8a9wFqI/AAAAAAAAD9s/fgNBbz2dD1o/w1346-h898-no/IMG_2069.JPG)

The food was delicious!
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: rveal23 on September 20, 2013, 03:29:20 pm
PZ, I forgot to comment back on the Muenster that I had smoked the last time. My provolone and cheddar came out great however the Muenster came out pretty week. Next time I think I need to smoke it a bit longer.  I only smoked it for 1hr and used apple. Next time I do Muenster Ill do 1.5-2 hours to get the flavor I like.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Saber 4 on September 20, 2013, 05:54:41 pm
That was a good looking spread, can't wait for October 1st!!!!!!

How much thyme did you put in the bread for seasoning?
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on September 20, 2013, 07:22:38 pm
PZ, I forgot to comment back on the Muenster that I had smoked the last time. My provolone and cheddar came out great however the Muenster came out pretty week. Next time I think I need to smoke it a bit longer.  I only smoked it for 1hr and used apple. Next time I do Muenster Ill do 1.5-2 hours to get the flavor I like.

Sounds very reasonable rveal23 - I feel the same about my Muenster, and will increase the smoke next time.

That was a good looking spread, can't wait for October 1st!!!!!!

How much thyme did you put in the bread for seasoning?

Thanks Saber!  We didn't measure - my wife pulled a few sprigs out of the garden and then we peeled off the tender leaves.  If I had to guess, I would say about 3-4 tablespoons of the dried thyme.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Saber 4 on September 20, 2013, 07:27:20 pm
Thanks, have you ever mixed the thyme with rosemary in the bread? it works so good on poultry I'm wondering how it would be in bread.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: pz on September 20, 2013, 08:23:03 pm
Although we have not tried both together yet, I would think that it would be quite good.  Unfortunately our rosemary plant died last year and we have not replaced it yet, but once we do, we're planning to do bread plus something we've not done yet - make finishing salt using herbs like rosemary, thyme, and others.  Smoked salt is also on the agenda.

We recently visited Kestrel winery in Prosser, Washington, and they had quite a few finishing salts, including the ones I mentioned above.  They were so good that we want to try our had at making them ourselves - they were very expensive and we thing that we can do just as good a job for a fraction of the price.

I think that's some of the fun of cooking - observe what others have been clever enough to do, and then replicate on your own to save lots of $
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Saber 4 on September 21, 2013, 05:40:42 am
I love doing the smoked salt, it means never having to have empty racks anymore. I will be looking forward to your herbed finishing salts adventure, it sounds like an awesome product.
Title: Re: First time cold smoking (cheese) experience
Post by: Richardson1976 on November 07, 2016, 09:43:12 am
I bought a wedgie for smoking cheese works great. Load it up and it smokes for two hours. Temp stays between 70-90.