1. Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.

Smoke Withdrawal Results in Cold Smoking Frenzy

Discussion in 'Other' started by GaryHibbert, May 10, 2018.

  1. GaryHibbert

    GaryHibbert Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Well, the control panel died on my MES 30 Gen 1. Maximum temperature I can get is 150* as measured by my Smoke Therm. Guess it’s time to rewire the MES and add a PID to the circuitry. Unfortunately it’s also Breakup here in Alberta—that dreaded period between winter logging and the summer gravel haul. That means all the money is spoken for until the checks start rolling in again about mid July. So……….obviously time to do some cold smoking.

    Happily, as it turns out, I used up the last of my smoked Honey Butter, Hungarian Paprika, and Hot Chocolate Mix while I was away hauling logs this winter. Now I’m pretty sure everyone will agree--any excuse is a great excuse to load up the smoker and fire up the AMNPS.

    OK, first up was the Hot Chocolate Mix. Now I know as well as anyone, that summer isn’t really hot chocolate weather, but I still do enjoy a mug of smoked hot chocolate while sitting outside on a cooI, rainy summer evening. As a matter of fact, it’s 4C (39F) and drizzling here right now, and I’m enjoying a steaming mug as I post this.

    20180510_132558 (2).jpg

    Here’s the link to my original Smoked Hot Chocolate post:


    I started with a 1.8 Kg (about 2 Pounds) of your ordinary store bought Mix.

    I spread the mix out as thinly as possible in as many pie plates and shallow containers as would fit in the MES.


    The outside two rows of the AMNPS were filled with Jack Daniels Pellets and when the pellets were smoking nicely from both ends, the AMNPS went into the Mailbox Mod. The MES, as always, was set at 100* to improve air flow through the smoker.

    I let the mix smoke for 6 hours—1 ½ hours longer than the last batch, simply to get a touch more smoke aroma and flavor. The last batch was delicious, but I wanted just a slightly heavier smoke this time.

    When I brought all the plates of mix into the kitchen, I stirred it all thoroughly to ensure an even mix of all the powder.


    After returning the mix to the original, fairly airtight, container, I let it sit for 24 hours.

    20180510_140701 (2).jpg

    Unable to wait any longer, I made myself a big mug of Smoked Hot Chocolate, topped with marshmallows. It was FANTASTIC!!! As soon as the container was opened, the aroma of smoked chocolate filled the air. When the steaming mug was ready to drink, the taste and smell were both better than I had hoped for. All I had to do was close my eyes and I could imagine myself sitting beside a campfire, drinking hot chocolate brewed over that same fire.

    About a year ago, I thought some smoked marshmallows would be a nice touch, floated on top of a mug of hot chocolate, so I cold smoked a couple of dozen. That experiment was a definite FAIL. The marshmallows dried out badly and took on almost no smoke. They wouldn’t even melt into the hot drink. Unless someone can come up with a successful method, it just isn’t worth the effort.

    I know it might all sound a little iffy, but I guarantee that if you try it, most of you will love it. The bad news is: Miss Linda is not in the “most of you will love it” group, preferring her hot chocolate unsmoked. The good news is: sharing is not required. I just bought her another container of her own.

    Next on the agenda was Honey Butter. It’s been just over a year since I smoked my first honey butter (www.smokingmeatforums.com/threads/smoked-honey-butter.260688/) and this will be the second time I will have fine-tuned the mixture of honey, butter, and length of time in the smoke.

    To 1 pound of room temperature butter I added 13 fluid ounces of liquid honey. For us old codgers, that’s 13 Imperial ounces. For my American friends with their slightly larger ounces that would be 12 ½ U.S. ounces. And for the younger generation who actually know how big a milliliter is that would be 369 ml. Our old electric hand mixer soon had everything well blended.

    The honey/butter mixture was then divided into 4 aluminum pie plates and placed in the MES (temp sitting at 100* to ensure good convection).

    I had partially filled the AMNPS with Orange pellets and it was happily smoking away when it went into the Mailbox Mod.

    20180422_140603 (2).jpg

    This time I wanted just a hint more smoke flavor so I increased the time in the MES from 2 hours to 2 ½ hours. When the time was up, everything was brought into the kitchen for packaging. Four pie plates of smoked goodness went into 3 plastic wrapped rolls and one butter dish for immediate consumption.


    Here you can see the difference in color of the smoked and unsmoked butter:


    The taste test was great. The slight decrease in honey and the slight increase in smoke time proved to be perfect. The honey butter was absolutely delicious!!

    Last on the list was the Spanish paprika. Last, and as it turned out, also least.

    Miss Linda had picked up a fairly large amount of Spanish paprika for me in Edmonton. I had wanted Hungarian Paprika, but she was unable to locate any. I had never tasted Spanish paprika but had heard good things about it, so I figured why not try it. Unfortunately, the paprika wasn’t as dry as I’m used to—it was moist enough to compact in the bag. I knew it would be a real PIA to sprinkle out of a shaker, so I decided to try drying it out some. I spread it out in several pans and put it in a 225* oven for a couple of hours—this just might have been my biggest mistake. When I took it out of the oven, the color had darkened quite noticeably. I tasted it and wasn’t real impressed with the flavor, but I decided to carry on with the smoking—all I had to lose now was some time.

    Hickory was to be the wood of the day, so I filled the AMNPS with Amazen Hickory Pellets. I had tried this batch of pellets before and they wouldn’t stay lit, so taking DaveOmak’s advice, I had dried them in a 250* oven for about 4 hours

    The paprika went into the MES—set at 100*--and the AMNPS went into the Mailbox. I like my paprika real smoky so smoke time was to be 5 ½ hours. Well, after about 20 minutes the pellets quit smoking, so I relit them. Fifteen minutes later, the same thing, and I relit them. After another 15 minutes they quit smoking for the third time. I was just a tad PO'd by now, so I grabbed the AMNPS and the full 5 pound bag of Amazen Pellets, headed into the bush at the back of my yard with all the subtlety of a bull moose in rut, and dumped all the pellets into the first big puddle of water I found. Damn things wouldn’t burn, so let ‘em rot.

    I went back into the house and dug out a bag of BBQer’s Delight Hickory Pellets and started all over again. Happily, these pellets burned flawlessly for the next 5 ½ hours.

    I brought all the paprika inside and thoroughly mixed it all together. Then it was packaged and sealed for its 10 day rest (I’ve found that for some reason paprika has very little smoke flavor or aroma until it has sat for about 10 to 14 days).


    After 10 days sealed up, I opened the bag and did a smell and taste test. The result?? An epic FAIL. It was awful!! I hated the taste!! This was a true tragedy, as I like smoked paprika as a condiment on meats and veggies. It always gets set out on the table, along with the salt and pepper. Sadly, after thinking about it for a couple of days, my only option was to deep six all seven ounces of Smoked Spanish paprika. Sigh. Oh well, at least the garbage dump will have a nice smoky smell.

    Well, I guess it's like the man said, "Two out of three ain't bad".

    Today I smoked a second batch of paprika. Still couldn’t get any Hungarian, and shied away from more Spanish, so just plain ordinary bulk bin paprika……….and BBQer’s Delight hickory pellets. I’ll be posting that smoke later.

    Thanks for looking


    Attached Files:

  2. buckaholic84

    buckaholic84 Fire Starter

    Man smoked hot chocolate that sounds very intriguing....like a smore in a cup with the marshmellows
  3. GaryHibbert

    GaryHibbert Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    It is. It really is delicious.
  4. gmc2003

    gmc2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Gary, I wish I knew this back in the fall. Smoked hot coco sounds like it would have hit the spot when we went through those days of -20 degrees. I'll have to remember this fall. The honey butter sounds intriguing. I'll have to give that a go soon.

    Point for sure.

  5. SmokinAl

    SmokinAl SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Gosh, I use smoked paprika in my rub, but I never thought about smoking my own!
    Traeger.Rage.BBQ likes this.
  6. Traeger.Rage.BBQ

    Traeger.Rage.BBQ Meat Mopper ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I am new to the cold smoke side but I absolutely planto try the hot chocolate butter and paprika.

    I’m thinking my pink salt and peppercorns may have their own appointments.

  7. GaryHibbert

    GaryHibbert Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Thanks Chris, and thank for the point.
    The smoked hot chocolate is a real winner. The first thing I'd do when I got back to my room after a long day hauling logs would be to put the kettle on. Then I'd kick back and unwind with a steaming mug. I generally add a touch of cinnamon to the mix--it goes great with the chocolate.
    As for the honey butter, it's become a standard for me. I slaver that on my morning bran muffin every morning. Richie came up with a new twist and added some orange zest to the mix. I was going to do that this time but couldn't find my zester.
  8. GaryHibbert

    GaryHibbert Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I think you'll really like it Al. If you do try it and are disappointed with the finished product, don't toss it. Just store it in an air tight container for a week or two. That seems to really concentrate the smoke into the paprika.
    This might sound weird, but my favorite use is with kernel corn. I butter the corn, add in some craisons, sprinkle it with hot sauce, and then some smoked paprika. Love that combo.
    I also always add it to my rubs.
  9. GaryHibbert

    GaryHibbert Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Thanks Pat, and thanks for the point. Appreciate it.
    These 3 items are my favorites for cold smoking. I either have them on hand or I'm planning to restock them.
    I tried smoking salt, but didn't have any luck with it. Ended up with beautiful color on the salt, but no smoke flavor or aroma--just pretty salt. If you do try it, be sure to check out "The great salt experiment". Here's the link:


    It's a great post and VERY informative. It breaks the smoking down into hot and cold smoking for varying times.
  10. WaterinHoleBrew

    WaterinHoleBrew Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member

    Nice my friend, you've definitely given me some ideas! Thanks!!
  11. GaryHibbert

    GaryHibbert Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Thanks Justin and thanks for the Point.
    As for giving you some ideas, I figure I still owe you a few more yet. BTW I tried the smoked blue cheese (love blue cheese) and was pretty dissapointed. It took on no smoke flavor at all. Next time I'll try doubling the smoke time, 'cause I really want some smoked blue cheese.