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Author Topic: Smoker/Curing tips and tricks I have learned  (Read 392 times)

Offline Electric Miner

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Smoker/Curing tips and tricks I have learned
« on: March 12, 2018, 07:56:21 PM »
Sometimes the hard way.


The inside of a smoker is a fine environment for the growth of Clostridium botulinum. This is the bacteria that causes botulism. It is found in nature as a dormant spore. It comes to life in a low-oxygen environment (fill the smoker with smoke, you force out the oxygen, and create a low-oxygen environment) around 40 degrees and the spores die when the temps reach 140 degrees. It takes around 4+ hours for Clostridium botulinum to "wake up".

Rule #1 is this: The internal temperature of your meat must reach 140 degrees in less than 4 hours. If it does not, you are risking making people very sick.

Cold smoking

Cold smoking is an exception to the 140 in 4 hours rule. You can cold smoke in three ways.

1 - the temperature of the smoker must remain below 40 degrees for the entire smoke.
2 - you must smoke for less than 4 hours, then pull the food and cool it to below 40 degrees as quickly as you can (less than 4 hours for the whole process).
3 - you can cure the meat before smoking, usually with Cure #1, a mix of 6.25% sodium nitrate, and 93.75% salt. This prevents mold and bacteria, including Clostridium botulinum, from growing. There are rules for how much cure to use to get the proper amount of sodium nitrate into the meat.

I'll add more stuff to this thread later.