You've smoked brisket, ribs, and chicken, but have you ever tried smoking dairy? No, not a gallon of milk; I mean a hunk of cheese! Delicious and creamy, smoked cheese is the perfect snack or topping to a burger or sandwich. Malcom Reed, the pitmaster behind popular YouTube channel, How to BBQ Right created an informative video about how to smoke cheese and we think you'll get a kick out of it too.
How To Smoke Cheese
Unlike smoking meat which uses hot smoke to cook and smoke the protein, smoking cheese uses a cold smoke technique to add the smoke flavor to the cheese without making it melt. Because of this, cheeses with a high melting point (swiss, gouda, cheddar, pepper jack, mozzarella) are great for cold smoking.
What is Cold Smoking?
According to Smoked BBQ Source, the technique of cold smoking goes way back. People used this technique mainly to preserve food in the winter when it was scarce. Food like tofu, nuts, vegetables, hard-boiled eggs, olive oil, and garlic can all benefit from this smoking process along with cheese, fish, and sausages.
The cool thing about cold smoking is that you don't need a smoker to do so. Using your normal gas grill, add the cold smoker kit or tube smoker, fill it with wood pellets, and you are good to go! Make sure to keep the cheese as far away from the heat source to prevent it from melting. It's better to cold smoke on a cool day to prevent the grill from heating up.
Before cold smoking cheese, have the blocks of cheese sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes so the oils come to the surface area. It'll infuse more smoky flavor this way!
After 3-4 hours remove the cold-smoked cheese from the grill grate and bring it indoors. Wrap it in plastic wrap and let chill in the refrigerator for seven days for the flavors to infuse deep inside of the cheese. While it might be hard to resist, these cheese blocks are well worth the wait!