A few cheeses smoked and a few experiments tried

Discussion in 'Cheese' started by fire it up, Jan 2, 2010.

  1. fire it up

    fire it up Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Ran out of smoked cheese a few weeks ago so I fired up the smoker (cold fired up I should say) and smoked up some goodness.

    I had a few chunks of jack, pepperjack and extra sharp cheddar.
    I smoked them over oak and pecan for 2 1/2 hours averaging 72 degrees.

    I wanted to try a few ideas I had this time so in addition to the regular smoking process I seasoned up a few of the chunks as well.

    First I took some pepperjack and put it in some hot chili sesame oil for several hours.

    Next was another chunk of pepperjack coated in fresh ground black pepper

    My third experiment was a chunk of cheddar coated in some paprika, chipotle, garlic and oregano

    I let all the cheese sit in the fridge unwrapped for one hour then set on the counter for one hour so the outside of the cheese would develop a nice dry skin on it.
    Everybody ready to party.

    For building the fire I started a few coals, placed 4 of them in a circle with a few small pieces of wood in the center, since it was a bit cold out I ended up having to add 2 more coals to the pile to reach my desired temperature (anywhere between 70-90 degrees)

    Here is the same pile nearing the end of the smoke, I had to add wood twice and used a total of around 10 coals for the entire smoke.

    Ready to come out

    A few shots of the seasoned ones

    The rest of the gang ready to get wrapped and take a long nap.

    Now comes the hard part...waiting 2 weeks for the smoke to mellow and meld with the cheese. You can eat the cheese before that but 2 weeks seems to be the perfect amount of time for the cheese to set.

    Smoking cheese is another one of those things I feel tastes so much better when you do it yourself compared to buying some from a deli that was smoked who knows where with who knows what.

    Hope you enjoy my cheese smoke Qview, I'll be updating in about 2 weeks [​IMG]
  2. meat hunter

    meat hunter Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Looks really good there FIU. Be sure to post it in 2 weeks when its time to eat[​IMG].

    Question for you. How far will the smoke penetrate into the cheese?
  3. 1adam12

    1adam12 Fire Starter

    thanks I am going to try the pepperjack
  4. scarbelly

    scarbelly Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Wow FIU that is some great looking cheese. Please be sure to post some results for us. I am looking forward to hearing about the peppered and the chili oil ones
  5. scpatterson

    scpatterson Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I have gotta do me some cheese...Gotta give you some points for trying something diff...Thanks for sharing[​IMG]
  6. bigslick

    bigslick Smoke Blower

    Can not wait to hear how the seasoned ones turn out.
    Newb question, so you wrap tight and put in the frig for the 2 weeks? do you let cool before wrapping to avoid moisture?
    Love the Q-view thanks for sharing and for trying something new!
  7. I like what your doing with coating / soaking the cheese, I think it will add some interesting flavors.

    I have a couple questions on your method. Whats the benifit to targeting 70 - 90*? Why do you smoke the cheese for 2 1/2 hours. It seems like those two conditions in a smoker could dry the cheese out.
  8. solaryellow

    solaryellow Limited Mod Group Lead

    Looks great! I can't wait to hear how the experimental stuff turned out. [​IMG]
  9. rivet

    rivet Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Jim, you've done some creativity here! Love that hot chili sesame oil baby....wow.

    Keep us posted on the results. Everything looks so good! You may have just pushed me into trying this.

  10. fire it up

    fire it up Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    You can wrap tightly in plastic wrap but I vacuum seal them and then let them sit for 2 weeks. And yes, I let them cool completely to room temperature before sealing them.

    The 70-90 is just somewhat of a standard for cold smoking cheese, if you go above 90 you run the risk of your cheese softening too much and possibly even melting.
    Normally I smoke these types of cheese for 2 hours and mozzarella for 3 but my last batch could have used just a touch more smoke flavor which is the main reason I gave them the extra half hour. You want them to go long enough to pick up ample smoke flavor and you don't have to worry about the cheese drying out, you don't want it to be moist to begin with which is why you need to let the cheese sit for a while so it will develop a "skin" on the outside.

    The paprika/chipotle one smells amazing, it's going to be hard waiting for that one.

    John, I hope you give it a shot sometime this Winter. When I first tried smoking cheese I really wasn't sure if I could keep a proper low temp in the sNp but it works like a charm.

    A tip to anyone who decides to smoke cheese, some folks will place ice in their water pan inside of the smoker to keep the temps cool, it's a good idea if you are unable to get temps down to where you need them.
  11. beer-b-q

    beer-b-q Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Jim, your cheese looks fantastic...[​IMG]
  12. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    I need to try that before summer, It gets a little hot my way! [​IMG]
  13. old poi dog

    old poi dog Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Aloha FIU,

    Looking forward to your posting again in two weeks. Thanks for the great Q-view.
  14. alx

    alx Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Nice work Jim....I have been thinking of a chile rub for some and i like that peppercorn as well......Nice you did a bunch.....[​IMG]
  15. treegje

    treegje Master of the Pit

    What a way to start a year [​IMG]
  16. danmcg

    danmcg Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    looks good, I really looking forward to the taste tests. keep us posted.
  17. Can you site your source of information? Id like to read it.
  18. deltadude

    deltadude Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Fire it up

    thanks for the great post, I have to give give smoked cheese in the MES a try. Your post will give me a good start on some ideas...
  19. fire it up

    fire it up Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    As with most things I do I get info from here, there, all over the place.
    Here is a link to the section on smoking cheese from smoking-meat.com

    I'm sure I can dig even deeper if you would like any more info to read on the subject.

    I sure hope you give it a try, it really is a lot simpler than many folks may think and so worth doing.
    Some smoked pepperjack cheese on top of a homemade pastrami sandwich...Man it doesn't get much better!
  20. etcher1

    etcher1 Master of the Pit

    I'am going to have to try some of those experiments!

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