I am really excited about this post because the cold smoker is up and running as of 1pm today. My friend Ken and I have been talking about this forever, and last weekend we made the trip to Lowe’s for parts and did most of the construction. Today, it took maybe an hour to set everything up and get a nice cold smoke (<90 F) into our smoke box (aka mini fridge).
I won’t bore you with all the details as there are a ton of online sources about rigging up a cold smoker, including Alton Brown’s locker smoker and cardboard box smoker. But I will say if you have the time and inclination, this was NOT a difficult project and cost around $50. If you have any questions about the components, construction, etc, please ask in the comments, and I’ll do my best to answer.
Notes: this thing worked like a charm! We had very little smoke loss in the system, although the duct tape by the smoke generator melted off and had to be replaced by metal tape. Temperature never got anywhere near 90F – probably closer to 60 or 70, dropping to 50 or so when the sun went down. The only thing we’ve tasted so far was a batch of smoked spiced almonds that were killer as part of our appetizers. The cheeses and smoked salmon (bottom shelf) have great color, and I can’t wait to taste them.
On a side note, we also have ~12lbs of bacon going on to hot-smoking grills tonight, so I will follow up soon with an “Everyone should make their own bacon” post.