Cold Smoked Cheese
This is a really simple process and the results will make you wonder why you’ve never tried it before. Forget about smoked cheeses bought from the local supermarket, this is the real deal, no painted on chemicals here.
Method: Cold Smoking
Suggested Wood: Apple, Cherry or Hickory
Smoke Time: 2-3 hours
Depending on what type of smoker you’re using, will determine the amount of time taken to smoke, If you are unsure, try smoking it for an hour 1st time round. We find that using the ProQ™ CSG (Cold Smoke Generator), cheese comes out best when smoked for between 2-3 hours.
Buy some cheese. If you intend smoking a relatively dense cheese, such as Cheddar, it’s best to cut it into inch square strips (this will allow for a more even smoke penetration).
Place the cheese on the racks in your smoker. Make sure that there are spaces between each piece, to allow the smoke to pass over all the surfaces. Remember that ambient temperatures are relevant, so if it’s a scorcher of a day (above 30°C) don’t attempt cold smoking cheese as it will melt.
Fire up your cold smoke generator (see instruction manual) and place it below the cheese. Close the lid of your smoker. If your unit has adjustable air vents, the main principles to remember are… Firstly, the amount of smoke required to flavour food is minimal, basically you need as much smoke going out as the amount going in, so you may have to close your top vent a bit. Billowing smoke, or smoke that is trapped in the smoker, will leave a “creasote like” residue and taste. Sit back and relax (preferably indoors, as it’s cold outside, right!). Using the ProQ CSG this process will take between 2 to 3 hours.
Remove the cheese from the smoker and pat it dry with kitchen towel.
Wrap in Clingfilm or kitchen foil, before leaving the cheese to rest in the fridge, at least overnight, but it’s best left for a week or more. The resting time will allow the smoke flavour to mellow.