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Mr. T’s Cold Smoking Options

In no way am I endorsing any product other than Cookshack. My only intention in this thread is to share what works for me alone.

For many of us, true cold smoking (smoker internal temperature below 90°) has always been a challenge as there are so many things that can be cold smoked. We search for an easy to operate cold smoker that allows temperature and smoke control without spending a large amount of money for a commercial smoker. After experimenting throughout my smoking career with dozens of contraptions and gimmicks as many do, I now have several easy choices that allow control of the heat and amount of smoke.

Pre-roasted nuts which can easily take 90° heat are one of the more forgiving products to cold smoke while soft cheeses are one of the least. It’s my opinion that cheese will begin to change its consistency at 80° therefore, the hard cheeses are pulled when the smoker internal temperature reaches 70° to 75° the soft cheeses will be pulled when the internal temperature reaches the mid-fifties to 60°. This requires a true cold smoke.

The choice of smokers to use at any one time depends on the product being smoked, the amount of product and the ambient temperature.

Amerique with a modified smoke collector

Located on top of the Amerique is a garage sale Little Chief smoker (two for two dollars) with the heating element removed and ten ½ inch holes drilled in bottom so not to constrict air leaving the Amerique. Lid is affixed to the bottom with two metal screws. Aluminum tape was used to seal pan door.

Note: It was important to me not to constrict the A/Q exhaust which could have voided the warranty. By having larger holes in the L/C than the A/Q a small draft is actually caused which would do no harm at all to the A/Q. My warranty has long expired anyway.

Temperature and smoke is controlled by the amount of wood and the temperature setting on the A/Q smoker. A temperature of 20° or less above ambient temperature can easily be maintained using this method. A colder smoke can be reached with this unit by using the Cookshack cold smoke adaptor with ice and placing the adapter with ice above the temperature probe.

Uses: This is used to smoke small amounts of cheese, breads, crackers, nuts, etc.

Example of use: Raw nuts can be smoked / roasted in the bottom while simultaneously cold smoking pre-roasted or peanuts in the top.

Poly cutting board with holes drilled for A/Q smoker exhaust along with indentations drilled for easy rack placement. The Little Chief rack is placed over the exhaust vents of A/Q, product placed on the racks then inverted Little Chief is placed over rack.

Smoking Dandelion blooms prior to battering and deep frying.

This is my Rube Goldberg Smoke generator (made from a bee smoker) used before acquiring a more practical and convenient commercial one. Wood chips, chunks or pellets are placed in canister. The tubing from a small aquarium air pump is connected to the copper tubing on the smoke generator. The copper tubing extends into the neck of the smoker about one inch. When air is turned on, a Venturi effect is caused which draws fresh air through the bottom of the smoker and pushes smoke out. The wood is ignited in the bottom with the use of a small torch.

Amerique with Smoke Daddy smoke generator attached to custom door. The Smoke Daddy smoke output is controlled by the use of a small variable speed aquarium air pump. The more air applied to the generator, the more smoke and heat exiting the generator. Once a draft has started the air can be completely turned off. The doors can be interchanged within fifteen seconds. Depending on the amount and type of product being smoked, the temperature here can be controlled to within 3° to 18° above ambient temperature. By using any combination, the Cookshack cold smoke adapter with ice, and or the smoke collector alone, a colder smoke can easily be obtained and is used on warm days.

Note: When using this setup, the A/Q’s is used as a smoke collector only and the power is off.

Uses: This is used for cold smoking spices and larger amounts of cheese and meats.

Now, this is cold smoking.

"Cold" cold smoker

Uses of this converted milk cooler are portable storage cart for SM 009 -2, FTC container, refrigerator or by changing doors and using the refrigerator mode, a cold cold smoker.

This is my 22 cubic feet cold smoker made from a beverage cooler and is used for even larger amounts of cheese, fish, meats, hams, etc.

By using a wood stove (which is under the deck) as a pre-cooler or heat sink, the smoke temperature in this unit can be held at a negative ambient temperature or at 2° above ambient, maximum. The cast iron stove absorbs heat generated from the smoke generator before exiting and traveling through metal pipe were it is further cooled before entering the smoker.

Because of the narrow temperature difference between the smoke generator and the collector a fan is needed to draw the smoke into the collector. The fan used is the original cooler fan, and insures good smoke circulation around the product.

Salmon being cold smoked prior to canning.

With the addition of the pellet smoker all my options are doubled.

True cold smoking can open a whole new world of smoking. Hope this gives those interested some ideas on how to cold smoke. If it causes some of you diehard’s sleepless nights, welcome to the crowd.

Cold smoke generators.

Pictured left to right, Smoking Gun, AMNPS and a Smoke Daddy being used and all fueled with the same type of Hickory pellets.

The Smoking Gun, opens a whole new world to smoking. If it can be consumed, it can be smoked using this unit. Although it cannot duplicate the deep penetration that a long cold smoke would produce, it can apply a layer of smoke to most anything by using such fuels as woods, spices, herbs or teas. This unit produces no discernible heat and can produce a color of smoke from blue to white depending on the type of fuel being used chips, pellets, dust or any dried material. This could also be an affordable device to use in areas where open grills or smokers are not allowed such as apartments or condos as it can be used indoors.

The AMNPS will produce a wispy plume of smoke for a relatively long period of time depending on the fuel being used, pellet, saw dust or powder. It can be used for adding additional smoke to a grill or when a long slow smoke is desired. One or both ends can be lit if more smoke is desired. It does produce heat so if using it to cold smoke, modifications may or may not be needed to the smoke collector or the way the smoke is delivered.

The Smoke Daddy, is able to apply a large or small amount of smoke in a short time. It can be used for large walk in smokers or the smaller ones by adjusting the variable speed air pump. By using chips chunks or pellets alone or in combination, once a draft is started, the air pump can be turned off. Like the AMNPS the Smoke Daddy can produce a little heat when cold smoking so modifications may be needed.

You too can create delectable items like this sandwich. The recipe was shared by another forum member. It’s made with dark rye bread, brown mustard, thick slice of onion, smoked Limburger, sardines and smoked Braunschweiger.

Related Threads:

Smoking Breads

Smoking Cheese
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All I can initially say is WOW. That's very impressive. I think we now know what happened to MacGyver after his show ended. There's a whole lot of ingenuity with those units. The custom door with the Smoke Daddy is pretty slick.

While there's some occasional mention of cold smoking on the forum, there's not a lot of it. My initial read of this post has already given me a couple ideas of things I can easily adopt to improve my cold smoking efforts.

Great post Mr. T. Thanks for sharing.
A couple of things that have worked for me over the years. I cold smoke cheese and salmon in the heat of the summer using my AmeriQue and a cold smoke baffle. I just put ice into the smoker along with the cheese or salmon. Also on the PG500 and PG1000 the warming drawer works great for cold smoking. I have smoked cheese in it for 3 to 4 hours without it melting.
Originally posted by Stuart:
... Also on the PG500 and PG1000 the warming drawer works great for cold smoking. I have smoked cheese in it for 3 to 4 hours without it melting.

Hmm, my 1000 doesn't have one of those, think I need to contact the company about the design flaw in mine... Wink

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