Smoke is an excellent food preservative that has been in use for much of human history. Smoke from hardwoods like hickory and oak has both the ability to flavor meat and to create a barrier to bacteria that might cause the meat to spoil. Smoking is still a valuable tool, though modern smoking has more to do with flavor than with preservation. There are two main ways to smoke meat—hot smoking and cold smoking. Hot smoking is what barbecue chefs do with standard grills and smokers. Cold smoking is a little trickier. Cold smoking involves smoking meat at the lowest temperatures possible, the trickiness comes from ensuring that the meat gets an adequate amount of smoke while also maintaining the low temperature. A cold smoker is a smoker designed for this type of smoking.
A smoker is designed to cook at low temperatures and to impart the flavor of wood smoke into food. There are many different smoker styles and sizes at a variety of price points. We cover the five types you should know (with pros and cons for each) before you make any smoker buying decisions. Vertical … Read more