Klassy Smoking

I’ll admit it.  I am a bit of a snob.  I am even dubious of red wines from Sonoma, anything made in China (except Chinese food) and Canned Spam.  But when it came to finding a cold smoker with the perfect balance utility and price, I swallowed my greater sensibilities and ordered one.  It was called the “Amaz’n Pellet Smoker”.  The mere fact that it had an apostrophe in it’s name was enough to raise a well coiffed eyebrow.  And when I saw it was actually spelled “Amaz’n”, I barely stifled an eye roll and practically passed it by altogether.  But, curiosity (and the fact that it was only about 40 bucks) got the better of me and I ordered it.  Besides, who would ever find out?

About a week later a little box showed up with a bag of cherry wood smoking pellets (which looked a lot like rabbit food) and a small metal perforated device for burning said pellets.  Basically, you fill the device up with whatever sort of wood pellets you want to flavor your target with, light one end with a blowtorch and blow out ensuing the flame after a minute or so.  AMAZN

The pellets are laid in a bit of a snake like row from one end of the device to the other – separated by a small metal wall.  This essentially acts as a “fuse” slowly burning the pellets from one end to the other, all the while generating smoke – for about 6 hours.

So, with a healthy dose of pessimism, last night I rigged the thing up and set out to cold smoke two mammoth blocks of mozzarella.  I filled the unit with pellets from one end to the other.  Using my creme brulee torch, I blasted an intense blue flame in the hole at one end and in about 30 seconds or less the pellets near the hole were burning.  I let them burn for about a minute and gently blew out the flame.  I placed the unit – which was now happily smoking away in the bottom of my 22.5 inch Weber Smokey Mountain (we snobby pit masters call this a “WSM” because it sounds much cooler).  I placed the cheese in the top rack, replaced the cover and went to bed to let it smoke.

I went to visit my project first thing this morning, half expecting to see that the pellets had gone out and stopped smoking.  The yard had a pleasant cherry smoke smell that was encouraging.  I opened the front access door on the WSM – and all the pellets were burned.  I carefully lifted the lid  and – DSC_0095low and behold – two beautiful golden bricks of mozzarella lay before my astonished eyes.  I was sold.  This Amaz’n Pellet thing actually is AMAZ’N.  I quickly vacuum packed my prizes and put them in the fridge to mellow for a week or so.

So if you are looking for an inexpensive, simple, effective cold smoking solution for your cold smoking dreams – look no further than something with an apostrophe in it.  Mighty klassy if’n I don’t say so myself.  Did I actually say Klassy?  God Help me.

Check out https://www.amazenproducts.com.  (I ordered the AMNPS – which is the pellet smoker).  You can cold smoke salt, peanuts, bologna, lox, cheese, popcorn… possibilities are endless.   And don’t let the name fool you.


About The Quincho Project

Dedicated to the pursuit of all forms of live fire cooking and the thoughtful prose it evokes. Whether prodding at a dying fire, patiently waiting on a perfect steak or simply contemplating a thin blue curl of smoke - I am truly at peace.
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2 Responses to Klassy Smoking

  1. I’ve been meaning to pick up something like that, or craft my own whilst tinkering in the garage on a Saturday afternoon. The one’s I have seen use saw dust I believe. They look like a good deal of fun. Endless possibilities is right. One blogger in the UK I fancy to read does some amazing trout this way. http://countrywoodsmoke.com/2011/09/05/juniper-cured-hot-smoked-trout/

    On a side note, and off topic, I should like to mention to you that I have been reading through that book you recommended a while back, Peace Love and Barbecue. I picked up a copy at your advisement and so far, it has been excellent. I’ve enjoyed it immensely, aside the fireplace whilst the spring time blizzards rage outside my window. Very cool book. Thanks for pointing me to it!

    Take care,

    • Excellent! I am glad you are enjoying Mike Mills’ book. Definitely a good read (and there are some good recipes in there as well – Wayne Monk’s Kitchen dip is wonderful and easy to adulterate). As for the cold smoking apparatus, I’ve seen folks do it with a perforated soup can and a wire mesh lid. But I am all thumbs and “handy” is not a way I could be described.

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