[Sca-cooks] Smoker was: Bread Questions

Karstyl karstyl at gmail.com
Sat May 30 09:13:00 PDT 2009

David Friedman wrote:

> Have you experimented with smoking as a method of preservation, rather 
> than only flavoring? I've wondered if it would be a useful way of having 
> meat at Pennsic without a cooler.

I have not, but I have thought about it.  The question is of course 
figuring out how is safe to do.  I am pretty sure that the smoke would 
need to really penetrate, or that the meat would need to dry out some. I 
am not sure what would be the most hostile to the nasty organisms that I 
would want to avoid. If I am remembering correctly, most preserved 
smoked meats are relatively dry, so running the smoker without the water 
pan would be called for. I have also thought that developing a 'crust' 
of smoke to seal the meat after getting it up to sterile temperatures 
could work, similar to how one can use a pie crust to seal out bugs. I 
would be creating an anaerobic environment inside the meat, so botulism 
is a worry.

I have never found any period resources about how to smoke meat for 
preservation, but I have also not looked seriously. hmm.

Just off the top of my head, my first try might be a dry smoke of thin 
(half inch or so) cuts, at around 250°F, for about to 8 hours. As a 
first try I would probably make lots of pieces and take one out each 
hour after around 4 hours to about 16 hours, then leave them at room 
temp for a few weeks in a cloth bag, each labeled, and see what happens. 
  Not sure how brave I would be to try them after.

The safest way would be dropping the smoked bits in honey or vinegar 
while still hot or making sure the meat ended up very dry, more like jerky.


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