I am also an avid gardener and cook. I have a large variety of fruit trees (Bartlett pear, Asian pear, tangerine, navel orange, Valencia orange, Key Lime, lemon, Santa rosa plum, nectarine, peach, apricot and pomegranate on my property. I use a lot of these woods in my smoker (landmann smokey mountain big block), but my current favorite is local manzanita mixed with a little pomegranate and plum.
I also have medium/small garden consisting of four 5' x 6' raised beds. I grow a ton of different kinds of chile peppers, tomatoes, herbs, onions, garlic, okra, beans, peas, potatoes and carrots. I cook with these and my fruits to make about 12 different styles of hot sauces each year and have been making hot sauces out of my garden for 25 years. I also grow and smoke my own chipotles and various pimento peppers to make my own paprikas.
I love to smoke all kinds of things (meats, fruits, and vegetables) and have been doing so for about 7 or 8 years. Lately we have a good source of heritage pork from a small farmer (Cook Family - Cook Pigs) in the mountains near San Diego, so I have been making my own nitrite/nitrate free (oh the horror!) bacon and guanciale. I would like to start making Duck Bacon as well. I am also a sport fisherman and have many friends in sportfishing and fish mongering. I make some great smoked fish and fish dip from all kinds of fresh and fresh frozen seafood. I am the primary cook for my family of four and love it.
I am excited to learn a bunch from the more experienced members, cooks, chefs, and food enthusiasts on this site
Edited by Smoke Alarm - 4/16/15 at 4:24pm