Cold smoked salt ruined

Discussion in 'Other' started by hillbilly jim, Jul 24, 2016.

  1. hillbilly jim

    hillbilly jim Meat Mopper

    Yesterday afternoon, I started cold smoking some cheese. Just for the heck of it, I decided to throw some coarse grain Kosher salt in with it. Not thinking (You big DUMMY!), I put the screen tray of salt UNDER the cheese. When I took everything out this mornin', I discovered the oil sweating out of the cheese dripped into the salt tray.

    Thankfully, it wasn't anything special or expensive. Lesson learned... Drip pan, stupid!!

  2. wade

    wade Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hi Jim

    It is always a good idea to separate different things in the cold smoker with a tray or some foil if you are stacking them above each other. More importantly though, if your cheese was dripping oil then you were smoking it way too hot. The cheese should not sweat when it is being cold smoked. If it was the smoke generator causing the heat them move it away from the smoking chamber. If it was just a very hot day then try smoking at night when it is cooler. Alternatively a tray of ice placed in the smoker will help keep the temperature down during the smoke.
  3. millerbuilds

    millerbuilds Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Those reusable freezer packs work well.  I have also frozen blocks of ice and put them in a foil pan.

    Smoke On!

    - Jason
  4. hillbilly jim

    hillbilly jim Meat Mopper

    What highest temp do you recommend cheese be allowed to reach?
  5. bauchjw

    bauchjw Master of the Pit

  6. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Jim....   I just shoot for room temp cold smoking....  even if I have to smoke stuff at night.....   Depending on the smoker temp, I may have to turn the smoker on momentarily to get a draft going then turn it off....
  7. wade

    wade Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Yes. 15-18 C (60-65 F) is a good temperature to smoke cheese. The lower end is better. Remember too that, although the salt will be OK overnight, the cheese only needs 2 to 3 hours in the smoke.
  8. hillbilly jim

    hillbilly jim Meat Mopper

    Well, let's see.....

    At 6 PM, the outside ambient was 69* F., so I put the cheese n the cabinet and lit the AMNPS. The aftermarket thermometer I installed in the cabinet showed the cabinet temp matched ambient.

    I lit the AMNPS and set it in the bottom of the cabinet. The 6 inch diameter exhaust flue I installed in the top of the cabinet was wide open and the cabinet temp went above ambient by one degree before I went to bed around 9 PM.

    When I got up around 6 AM the next morning ambient and cabinet temp were both in the upper 50s. When the ambient hit 70, I pulled the cheese. So, at no time did the cheese ever see more than 70*.

    As for the length of time..... All I know to tell you is everybody I'm sharing this with is raving about the flavor and asking when I'm going to do more.
  9. wade

    wade Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hmm. If your cheese started to sweat enough to drip to that degree at that temperature I am surprised, but maybe that was down to the type of cheese that you are were smoking - you didn't actually say. I would still be a little suspect of the internal temperature throughout the smoke though. Were all of the pellets burned when you got up in the morning? If so is it possible that at some point in the night you had a crossover burn that had the pellets of two tracks burning together? This would have likely increased the temperature sufficiently for a while to cause the cheese to sweat.

    It is good that they like heavily smoked cheese, many people do not. Next time it may be a worthwhile exercise to take a piece out at 2 hours, another at 4 and another at 6 etc. to see if they or you have any preference. You may find that although they like the overnight cheese they may actually prefer the 4 hour cheese - but then again they may not.
  10. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Was the cheese directly out of the refer when you put it in the smoker ??  Now I'm thinking it was condensate, maybe....
  11. wade

    wade Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    You may be right Dave. It looks as if it might be just water
  12. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

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