First time cheese, cold smoke and minor mods...

Discussion in 'Cheese' started by chef jay, Aug 20, 2011.

  1. chef jay

    chef jay Fire Starter

    [​IMG]So I am preparing for what would have been my first cold smoke tomorrow with bacon and I decided to pick up some cheese to smoke as well. Who doesn't like smoked cheese?

    I did some modifications to a smoker box that I have. I see that most people use this other smoker box, I did my google search and with shipping (and sawdust) it would be $60 so I thought I'd try this first. Looking at the popular brand, I noticed it was a lot of holes so I thought that the purpose of that is to help with the air flow. There are chambers which also explains the air flow. If you look on the left, there are smaller holes. I used a smaller drill bit and after snapping the 4th, I went to a bigger one. The rest of the box was done on 1 bit:

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    [​IMG]

    Keep in mind, this is a $10 box so whatever I do to it, who cares. I picked up three pieces of cheese, cheddar, mozzarella, and blue cheese. Blue cheese is popular in this house, we've bought smoked blue cheese at the grocery store and it wasn't impressive. What a great chance to see if it was the brand:

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    So keep in mind that this my first time cold smoking and really I'm testing the smoker for bacon I am doing tomorrow (which I already know is too salty but I will finish it so I know how to smoke for the next time). I have a side smoker on my gas grill which I've used a couple of times, smoked fish has come out awesome, but it's a hot smoke. When I first set it up, I had it set high off the burner and then my Dad send you are wasting the heat so I set it as low as I could go. I started the smoker box on the bbq and then heated up the smoker box. For obvious reasons, I couldn't get the low temp that I needed. I took it off, readjusted to the highest setting and still too hot. That's when it hit me, cold smoking, use the smoking box. After some farting around (and farting means f**king) I got set up:

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    My temps were running high, 115 to 117, hence the open door. I keep farting around and I got it below 110. More farting and more farting, finally my smoke died. The cheese was in for about 2 to 2 and 1/2 hours but to be honest I was more concerned with the heat since I want to smoke bacon so I wasn't watching time...

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    The cheddar is great, the mozzarella is ok but I think with a ball I need more time and the blue cheese, well, the blue cheese...

    If you like blue cheese (and let's be honest, it's a love hate relationship), smoke it. Smoke it often, it is unbelievable. For the record too, I used apple and pecan.

    Another one thing, above and beyond the amazing smoked cheese, is the oil that's produced with smoking. I know my temps were too high at some points but my cheese produced oil. I tasted that oil. If anyone can figure out how to bottle that oil, they will be a rich person.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2011
  2. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    You need to let the cheese age for at least 2 weeks in the fridge after smoking it.

    Trust me it will taste much better.

    The longer it ages the better it gets.
     
  3. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Very Cool!

    Try adding jugs of ice to keep the temps down in your box

    For Bacon, it does not really matter if the temp is at the 117° you're getting

    Todd
     
  4. realtorterry

    realtorterry Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    what kind of metal was that box?
     
  5. chef jay

    chef jay Fire Starter

    If I can keep it from my wife, we will age it two weeks.

    The box is a $10 smoker box that I got from the local hardware store. I should have pointed out that it does work a lot better.
     
  6. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Age that for two weeks minimum, looking forward to seeing how the blue cheese comes out. One question I have is "Where's the bacon?" [​IMG]
     
  7. chef jay

    chef jay Fire Starter

    The bacon I've started over. You will see it soon. The blue cheese is becoming hard to keep, someone keeps eating it...
     
  8. shrink wrap it! Then charge a $30 fine for opening (unless it's you, then you KNOW you should have done several).  I always offer 1 up for immediate, then another for the rest of that week. Seems to keep the wolves at bay!

    Good luck on the bacon
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2011
  9. roller

    roller Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Cheese looks good !!!!
     
  10. chef jay

    chef jay Fire Starter

    So the $30 fine was mine (which is ok because I get to buy more cheese) but it wasn't the blue cheese but the mozzarella. I ran out when I was making this and I needed more:

    [​IMG]

    Both the poblanos and tamales are stuffed with it. I also added to both smoked roasted jalapenos and cherry tomatoes. The poblanos also have chorizo and butternut squash. It was not a waste of cheese or smoke.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2011
    cfarley likes this.
  11. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Ah, Butternuts.  One of my favorites and soon coming into season! 

    Cheese looks great.  As the weather cools, we will be making lots more.

    Good luck and good smoking.
     
  12. scarbelly

    scarbelly Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Great looking smoke - the poblanos are looking great too
     
  13. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    MMMMMMMM, smoked stuffed poblanos!
     

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