A quick and simple post to share a bit more about cold smoking. Paul wrote about this last January when he built his smoking rig, and then again in May when he made @ideasinfood’s smoked fried chicken. (Incidentally, Alex and Aki put up a picture-by-picture description of the process just this week, which is great.)
I tried it out today (I also made the fried chicken, but used wings). Paul put together a cold-smoking rig for me for Christmas, which is really simple, and it makes me realize that I should have done it last January as well. You should too.
In the smoke box along with the chicken wings: black peppercorns and coriander seed (for ready-made pastrami spice), brown mustard seeds (for a future batch of smoked mustard), Anaheim chilis, and maple syrup (possibly for a compound butter for sweet potatoes).
I’m really impressed with how this simple contraption worked. Two hours of billowing smoke from 2-3 cups of hickory chips, and the temperature stayed right around 40-45 degrees in the box the whole time. It was cold here, in the low 30s all day, and by the time the smoke got to the fridge side of the dryer tubing, it was down around 40 degrees. The ice tray in the bottom of the fridge did not melt. I can’t wait to try this for cheese, fruit, whole chickens, garlic sausages, or a pig’s head. This process made for some ridiculous-good tasting wings. It’s as if you individually wrapped the wings in bacon and then fried them. If you’re looking for a dish to impress at your Super Bowl party (and you’re not planning on making crispy pig’s ears), this could be it.