In my younger days I guess I never really understood the true significance of smoke flavoured food and smoked products. I ate Bacon and Ham readily without having a single thought of how that magical taste was produced, as I grew older smoked onion soup, smoked Trout and Salmon and various other smoked goods found their place upon my plate. All the while I was experiencing the flavours and taste of the products although not really thinking too hard about how exactly it was made.
The art of successfully click reference has long been shrouded with much mystique and secrecy; many home recipes have already been passed down through generations of families and closely guarded by those that practice it regularly, commercial producers guard their proprietary recipes with the law……serious business this smoking sometimes.
Smoking is among the oldest methods of preserving a lot of fish, meat and game. Long before there was clearly any technology including refrigerators and freezers, people learned to use a mixture of salt and smoke to help keep fish and meat from forming harmful bacteria and spoiling. It was not endemic to the particular region, race or country and folks from cultures all over the world have relied on the smoke-curing of fish and meat products for longterm storage.
How many of you have even been slipped a piece of fish or meat from your old guy in the future from time to time that tastes just magnificent and wondered how he manages making it taste so great, or a mates mate who turns up with a back yard BBQ with some smoked foods that become the primary conversation topic as numerous a alcoholic beverage is consumed.
For several years now We have practiced, experimented, failed dismally and often produced some fantastic smoked foods and located the most difficult part of the whole process is consistency…….constantly producing a product that’s is nice is rarely always easy and requires complete charge of many aspects.
Hopefully within the article that follows I can dispel some myths, offer some facts and science and help you to having the ability to produce some terrific smoked foods and impress your families and mates with many tasty morsels.
In modern days their website is no longer considered a necessary process for retardation of food spoilage nonetheless it remains popular for that complex and tantalising flavours it gives to a lot of different foods. Throughout the mid 1800s the industrial revolution influenced most of the food world and then in particular the sea-fishing industry. Transportation of fresh fish produce was a hugely difficult job though with the arrival of rapid transportation for foodstuffs a long shelf-life was no more so essential. Since this became more widespread so did the accessibility to fresh fish, the buzz of heavily salted, heavily smoked products of history then started to decline.
Here is where the smoked fish products we now regard as traditional came into being; these are mildly smoked and dried and contain minimum salt content compared to the heavily salted fish of before.
During the mid to late 1900s the marketplace for smoked fish underwent an important change however the actual technology of smoking fish remained much just like it was for hundreds of years. What we do see more of now could be commercial cures that colour and flavour the merchandise to impress a massive consumer market and much less from the traditional smoked produce based on these time tested processes.
Ideally, smoked fish should get its flavour and mahogany colour from the smoke, but some cheaper smoked fish have smoke flavour added, and a few varieties, like some hot-smoked and garishly coloured ‘kippered’ salmon, use artificial food colour as well. Actually, a few of the brightly coloured cured fish purchased in supermarkets are not smoked whatsoever, simply flavoured having a cure that includes smoke flavouring.
There are 2 major reasons to smoke food, one is for preservation and also the other is perfect for texture and flavour, with food preservation not nearly as important as it once was the western world smoking today is used mainly to impart a nice mild smoky flavour.
What can’t you Smoke…!! This can be basically up to your imagination and personal tastes, Fish, Meat (Beef, Pork, Chicken, Turkey), Game (Venison, Wallaby, Duck), Vegetables, Cheese, Eggs even Salt…..when you can eat it fair bet it is possible to probably smoke it, unsure how smoked Apple would go though…?? I am sure at one stage or any other pretty much every type of food has probably been experimented with to see if it may be smoked. As the old saying goes though….
You can’t produce a top class smoked product from second rate food, in case your smoking the fish you catch address it well from the very beginning, straight on ice and take off all gills and gut contents, same with your meat should you hunt yourself, slaughter quickly, take care of it well and address it with respect and the final product will be well worth the extra effort. In case your buying products use reputable butchers and fish processors, go to find the best quality produce and with regards to poultry always buy organically raised birds…..trust me it can make a huge difference.
Some people are frequently of the opinion that smoking can cover up mouldy or stale fish and meat off-flavours, this is completely untrue and any unpleasant odours or flavours is going to be readily apparent quickly.
Smokers are available in all shapes and sizes and all kinds of styles, you can buy them from many tackle stores and camping shops and you can even make one at home from many thing, most of you would be very familiar tgyika the tiny box shaped galvanised or visit this website, what I term the “lunch box” smokers which I am certain many people have done most of their smoking in. These come in a selection of shapes, sizes and brands, are user friendly requiring only a bottle of methylated spirits for the burner or burners and a bag of sawdust. They actually do however only give a hot smoke product and they are not suggested for just about any foods apart from fish as there is little if any control of the temperature or smoke quality, any attempt at cold smoking will demand a more sophisticated create.