Bright flavor on bark

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by jerrymeyer, Apr 25, 2014.

  1. jerrymeyer

    jerrymeyer Newbie

    I got my Granddad's old CookShack smoker, and I have now used it a couple of times using a new bag of Hickory chunks, but the bark of whatever I make has a bright, almost citrus flavor to it that is kind of weird.  He used to smoke salmon in it all the time, and the flavor reminds me of his smoked salmon.  When I got the smoker, it was clean, and I have since been cleaning it out after every cook using water and a steel wool (no chemicals), so there is very little if any old wood, charcoal, or smoking residue.  Any suggestions as to what could be causing this weird flavor and how to fix it?
  2. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    How heavy is the smoke you're making?

    Is there a strong smoke flavor too?

    Does it cause your tongue to be numb?

  3. jerrymeyer

    jerrymeyer Newbie

    My last smoke was a 7 pound pork butt, and I used about 7.4 ounces of wood.  No numbing on the tongue that I have noticed.
  4. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I didn't mean the weight of the wood---I should have said "How thick was the smoke?"

    We strive to get TBS (Thin Blue Smoke), in other words not smoke so thick that you can't see through it.

    I'm not saying that's what you had, but since I can't think of any reason for having a "citrus" flavor, I'm thinking maybe it's a creosote flavor, or at least a bad flavor from too thick a smoke.

    There could possibly be a Salmon smell or taste, if he used to do a lot of Salmon in it, but I would think it would be a smoky fish flavor, not a citrus flavor.

  5. jerrymeyer

    jerrymeyer Newbie

    I think you may be on to something.  There is a smoked salmon flavor that I am picking up.  Does that go away eventually, or is there any suggestion on how to clear that out? 

    I'm also not really getting the thin blue smoke, it stays fairly cloudy through the cook.  I'm using a new bag of hickory, and I am smoking it dry, not soaking.  Any suggestions on how to address this?  Maybe using larger or smaller chunks, or wrapping in tin foil?  It's a Cookshack with an electric heating element, so I'm not sure how I could adjust the contact of heat onto the wood itself.
  6. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    If it's just the Salmon smell, it'll go away (personally I like it).

    As for an electric smoker, it's very hard to get thin blue smoke, or even consistent light to medium smoke. It will vary between too much smoke & no smoke. It will take a bit to get the smoke going, then it'll be just right for a few minutes, then too much, then just right (on the way down), then no smoke----Time for more wood & start the cycle over.

    Or you can get an AMNPS (Amaz-N-Pellet-Smoker). Then you can fill it with pellets, light one end, get it going real good, put it in your smoker, and enjoy up to 11 hours of perfect smoke, without touching it.

    Link to AMNPS:

    No I have nothing to do (financially) with Amazing Smoker----I just love the smokers & wouldn't want to try to use my electric smoker without mine.


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