How to Preserve Food by Smoking

Many people make their own smokers, but commercial ones are not that expensive. They comprise a unit of metal within which you can put hickory. The smoke then heats up and infuses the meat with a smoky flavor. You will need two thermometers – one for the food and one for the heater. The temperature in the heater needs to be between 107°C/225°F and 150°C/300′F. Make sure that both of the thermometers are ovenproof. Once the meat is cooled down, freeze it. Otherwise, make sure you use it within four days.

How to Preserve Food by Smoking How to Preserve Food by Smoking

Safe Smoking

It is not easy to be precise about the temperature that the meat needs to reach because it depends on its size and shape and how far away it is from the source of the heat. It could take up to eight hours to smoke meat; the following list gives you some guide to temperatures:

  • poultry (breast) – 80C/170T
  • poultry (whole) – 85C/180F
  • beef, lamb or veal joint – 65-80C/145-175 F
  • pork joint – 70C-80C/160-170F

Smoking Fish

Preserving fish by smoking has been practised for many centuries. Cold smoking needs temperatures of around 27°C/80°F and hot smoking needs 94°C/200°F. You will first need to make some brine as the fish needs to soak in the brine for 15 minutes for every 1.3 cm to cure it. Use 272 tablespoons plain salt per 250 ml/8 fl oz/1 cup water. Then, it can actually take several days for the cold smoking of fish, but hot smoking need only take a few hours. The longer the fish is smoked, the more it will absorb the smoke flavor.

Smoked Trout

This is straightforward, with a preparation time of 10 minutes and a smoking time of 3 hours:

  1. prepare your trout by gutting them
  2. stuff the trout with sliced lemon and a clove of garlic
  3. grind some black pepper over the trout
  4. place in the smoker for 3 hours
  5. when finished, remove the stuffing and serve, or freeze for later use

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