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

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

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:






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:




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:




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...




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.



Edited by Chef Jay - 8/20/11 at 4:03pm
post #2 of 13

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.

post #3 of 13

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



No Creosote! A-Maze-N Smokers

post #4 of 13

what kind of metal was that box?

post #5 of 13
Thread 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.

post #6 of 13

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?" biggrin.gif

post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 

The bacon I've started over. You will see it soon. The blue cheese is becoming hard to keep, someone keeps eating it...

post #8 of 13

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

post #9 of 13

Cheese looks good !!!!

post #10 of 13
Thread 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:


September 2011 010.JPG


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.

post #11 of 13

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.

post #12 of 13

Great looking smoke - the poblanos are looking great too

post #13 of 13

MMMMMMMM, smoked stuffed poblanos!

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