cottonwood for smoking?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by redneck1676, Jul 16, 2013.

  1. Had anyone ever used Cottonwood in their smoker? I just picked up a load for the fire pit, but wasn't sure about using it in the smoker. What do ya think?
     
  2. jeoberg

    jeoberg Smoke Blower

    Doesn't burn hot and the smoke stinks. At least that is my experience.
     
  3. Yeah I wasn't sure about it. Its real green so I figured ask the experts. straight to the burn pile for it then. Thanks
     
  4. dutch

    dutch Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I don't even use it for camp fires. Like jeoburg said, "it stinks"~to me it smells like someone pee'd in a fire (I'm a veteran Scouter~I know these things). Just imagine what your food would taste like!
     
  5. the fact that that smell is burnt into your memory is disturbing....lol. it mustve been bad. lol. funny but bad.
     
  6. Well if smell like that when you burn it anybody want a mess of cottonwood. Lol
     
  7. jrod62

    jrod62 Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    I wish it was good to burn. I would never have to buy wood chunks again . my cottonwood tree is a monster. By far the biggest tree in town.
     
  8. jeoberg

    jeoberg Smoke Blower

    For what it is worth, cottonwood also takes a long time to dry (up to two years) and will sometimes rot before it dries. Smell isn't quite so bad when fully dried.
     
  9. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

  10. dutch

    dutch Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    With about 17 years as a Scoutmaster under my belt, that means a lot of overnight and summer camps with a lot of new Scouts getting the ol' double dog dare ya to pee in the fire" from the older scouts.
     
  11. haha. classic!
     
  12. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Not only can you not cook with it, never use it for lashing anything. It like weeping willow and bends terribly. It is funny to watch a new patrol lash a rope bridge with it. The bark does strip off nicely though if you need to tie something in primative form.
     
  13. jeoberg

    jeoberg Smoke Blower

    This and other discussions I found on cottonwood make me wonder if we are talking about the same tree.  Even dry, I wouldn't want cottonwood anywhere near my food.
     
  14. Never had any cottonwood so didn't know. Now I've just got to get rid of it all
     
  15. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Black Cottonwood variety here.  Don't have any idea what variety yours might be.

    Tom
     
  16. jeoberg

    jeoberg Smoke Blower

    I imagine when dried you could use it in a fire pit. At least on windy days.
     
  17. jeoberg

    jeoberg Smoke Blower

    I'm not sure, I think it is eastern cottonwood.
     
  18. As long as we stay upwind may be fine
     
  19. garand555

    garand555 Smoke Blower

    Could be a variety issue. As was stated somewhere above, it can take a long time to cure. (Not so much here, where triple digit temps + single digit relative humidities happen.) It can smell like cat piss when not cured, but when cured it is very mild. It's like night and day between cured and not cured. I've never used it in a smoker, but I've used very well cured cotton wood for open flame cooking with great results. It can also be a PITA to split, but splitting it will help it cure faster. FYI, I have a cottonwood forest behind my house, which explains why I've burned a lot of it. When properly cured and split into smallish pieces, it will burn very hot and fast and leave a fairly small amount of coals. Big chunks tend to smolder for a while, especially when not quite cured. I've heard that well cured cottonwood is good for fish, but I've obviously not tried it.
     

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