Cheese rack placement?

Discussion in 'Cheese' started by superdave, Feb 15, 2015.

  1. superdave

    superdave Smoking Fanatic

    With a tall smoker, should my cheese rack be at the top or the bottom of the smoker?  I plan on having it directly over the ice pan rack either way but was wondering if there were any advantages to where it was placed in the smoker.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Other than temperature it shouldn't matter.

    Happy smoken.

    David 
     
  3. superdave

    superdave Smoking Fanatic

    Temperature is kind of the key, so that's why I asked.
     
  4. I smoke on a cool or cold day or night and fill up the smoker.

    MES 40 with AMNPS


    UDS with AMNPS



    Tent for kettle.


    Kettle with AMNPS



    Happy smoken.

    David
     
  5. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Each smoker is different.  To avoid uneven color, place your cheese were the smoke is concentrated, most likely toward the top, not too close to the vent. In time you will find the sweet spot.  If smoking in a confined space a diffuser may be helpful.

    Enjoy your cheese.

    Tom
     
  6. superdave

    superdave Smoking Fanatic

    Today's smoke, my second cheese attempt, was textbook perfect.  In addition to my ice tray and ceramic tile I used in first smoke, I added a big pan of sand.  Overall box temp was 20 degrees less than the first smoke, 65 today.  I don't think it could have gone much better.  I went high in the box for the cheese rack.

     
  7. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Now that's some fine looking cheese, Dave.  Nice even color.  Are you keeping good notes on what you are doing?  They will help on subsequent smokes.

    Enjoy,

    Tom
     
  8. mab007

    mab007 Fire Starter

    What is the optimum size chunk for smoking?  Has anyone experimented with 2" 4" 6" or larger blocks?  What about round cheese, like Gouda, what would be the optimum for the largest part of the wedge be?
     
  9. superdave

    superdave Smoking Fanatic

    I started and have stuck with 1 to 1.25 pound chunks and been very happy. 
     
  10. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Very good questions, 007.  The optimum size may be different for each of us.  It will depend on your patience. If you need cheese for supper you could apply a heavier smoke to some sliced cheese for a few minutes and be done with it.  On the other hand, you could smoke a two-pound block and let it cure for a few months and be happy with it.  As for the gouda, I cut a wedge about two and a half to three inches wide from the outside and smoke it with the rind on.

    Tom 
     
  11. as example my logs I try to get them in the 5-10lb size (average 5-51/2lbs) I will slice into 4-6 pieces (1 1/2 thick-2) depending on my needs. my round logs (gouda, provolone) I try to keep them at (2-4") lengths for our needs. I have seen that many cut theirs in it appears to be about 6" then quarter them (resembles a cube of butter). perfect gift sized (after waxing) so on this next run I am going to try that size as well. might become my standard size. I have just cut the logs in half and then smoked them separately (much, much longer) when I know they are going straight to the slicer.

    too many choices......

    happy smoking,

    Tom
     

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