Looking for a good home smoker.

Discussion in 'Cooking Equipment Reviews' started by nicko, Dec 2, 2000.

  1. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    I am looking for a decent home smoker, and haven't had much luck finding any that can handle both hot and cold smoking well. At the restaurant we had a beautiful digital smoker but it was thousands of dollars. I have been giving a lot of thought to making my own, but was wondering if there are any out that someone would recommend.

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    Thanks,

    Nicko
    ChefTalk Cafe Administrator
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    www.cheftalk.com "A food lover's link to professional chefs!"
     
  2. isa

    isa

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    On a very popular French cooking show, the host suggested we make our own smoker. He use a medium size old pot, make sure it's one that you don't mind sacrificing for this use, and put some wood chips on the bottom. To old the food, he put a cooling rack covered with a piece of screen. He put it on a burner on medium heat, I think.

    I never tried this method but judging from the comments left on his board it was highly popular and worked quite well.
     
  3. katherine

    katherine

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    Nicko, did you buy a smoker?

    I came up with this idea driving down to Florida two weeks ago. I'm thinking of making a cold smoker, using an old but working refrigerator as a temperature-controlled smoke chamber. The plan is to drill a hole in the top and another one in the side, toward the bottom.

    Next, take an old stainless pot with a tight-fitting lid you won't be needing any more. Have your local metal shop attach a fitting so you can put on a flared copper tube probably about 10'. The tube should be long enough to wind into a coil a little smaller in diameter than the lid, , have them flare it at one end. Attach the coil to the lid, bending the coil as necessary to allow it to sit on top and rise from it, to allow for cooling of the smoke. Now, run a plastic tube from the pot lid to the bottom hole in the refrigerator, and another one from the top hole to the outside, so you don't fill up your house with smoke.

    Put your smoke generator (pot) on a burner or hotplate, put in hardwood shavings, whatever you want to use for smoke. Turn up the heat until you start to get smoke. Put your meat or fish on the rack in the smoke chamber.

    If the copper coil gets a little warm, it's ok, but you don't want it to get so hot you melt your plastic tubing. If it does get hot, a fan might cool it, otherwise you would need to arrange for water cooling. The cooling coil would probably need to hang into a kettle of cold water.

    I haven't done this yet myself, so if you succeed, you may consider yourself an engineer as well.