View Full Version : First success at cold smoking

07-18-2012, 12:07 AM
After years of tinkering I finally came up with a good cold smoking technique (at least it works for me). I've built a bunch of smokers including one out of an ancient metal lined refrigerator that still works. This one had fans and a bunch of ducting to another grill that generates the smoke. A bit complicated but I could keep the temps below 60 degrees easily. The problem was the condensation that would drip all over so I gave up on it.

The next semi-successful attempt was an aluminum tube with a fish tank pump that would pipe the smoke into my Smoke Vault. I could keep the temps below about 80 degrees but after much experimenting I never could get anything but billowing white smoke. Makes my tongue tingle just to think about it.

Anyway I picked up a bunch of cheese on sale that I wanted to smoke. I've been wanting to buy an "amazin" pellet smoker but can't afford the $40 right now. I was in wally world and picked up a three pack of expanded aluminum grill toppers and a spatter screen. I did 5 minutes of cutting and bending and ended up with a 12" X 3" aerated trough to hold some alder pellets.

Overnight I froze a bunch of water in the Smoke Vaults water tray as well as in half a dozen pop cans. After lighting the pellets with a torch I let it burn about 5 minutes before blowing out the flames and putting it in the smoker. It smoldered for over three hours with barely visible smoke coming out the vents (I had all three vents wide open).

The outside temp climbed from ~65 degrees to almost 80 degrees. The temp inside the smoker started at ~50 degrees and slowly climbed to about 70 degrees as the ice melted. Just what I was hoping for but hadn't really expected.

I was very happy with the results of my "variety" load of smokables. All the cheeses turned out great but I'll age them in the fridge for a couple weeks before my final conclusions go in my smoker logbook. The half dozen boiled eggs were very tasty and didn't even make it to the fridge from the smoker. I had several 1/4 lb cubes of butter in this batch and they didn't disfigure at all!!!!! I know I'll enjoy the salt but I have no idea what I'm going to do with the sugar and canned clams I threw in the smoker since I had a bit of extra space. Any suggestions?

I'm very happy with my homemade pellet smoke generator and will use it often until I can afford a "real" A-maze-in smoker.



07-18-2012, 01:29 AM
That is great Rob. I would love to get into cold smoking at some point. Do you have any pictures to share?

07-18-2012, 07:23 AM
Good thoughts on making your own pellet burner.

It's not a matter of affording, but rather the asking price. I feel they are priced too high.

Thanks for the idea on the grill toppers.

07-18-2012, 07:32 AM
Great post! Pics please?l