Smoking Food

I might have misunderstood but I’m sure you have to cook poultry after cold smoking, unlike fish which you can eat raw.

You are absolutely right, Debby! But duck is different - I certainly wouldn’t eat chicken unless thoroughly cooked. However, duck is often served pink in the middle - like beef only less so. Any pink chicken that was served to me would go straight back :mask:


I think you’ve tried enough with duck… I hate the thought of it being thrown away.

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So do I, @Stella :frowning: Trouble is - I love smoked duck breast :roll_eyes:

Smoking and THEN drying makes more sense - the smoke provides a (mostly) mould/bacteria proof coating to the duck, which can then dry in the air. It’s how I dry salami that would otherwise go mouldy and spoil over time.

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thankfully, there is a chap locally who does fabulous duck bits and bobs… yummy. By the time I’ve chucked away my failed efforts, it’s cheaper to buy direct from him… :wink: :wink:

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As someone who has followed this thread from afar with some bemusement - obviously smoked food has considerable appeal - I feel I must ask …

Is smoked meat and fish not carcinogenic? We are told not to smoke cigarettes, or eat burnt toast or burnt sausages from the barbeque. In what way is the smoking you are all doing different from this?

It probably is, if you have the right susceptibility.

FWIW I like burnt toast & crunchy sausages from the BBQ, and will continue to eat them. However smoking delivers particles and chemicals direct to a mucosal surface that isn’t designed to cope with that kind of assault, where the gut is much more resilient for most people.

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Cigarettes are all together a different kettke of fish, many carcinogens being absorbed directly into the body. Burnt food carcinogens are largely dependent on preservation chemicals (nitrogen based preservatives can produce nitrosamines when burnt).
As for smoking as a means to preserve food, its been going on for centuries, probably much longer than tobacco has been used and processed food developed . Probably ok in limited quantities but obviously only if the wood used to make the smoke is chemical free.


I hated burnt toast, but Dad insisted it was good for our teeth and made me eat up… yuk.
One of the benefits of being Adult is not having to eat burnt toast… :wink:


I think commercial stuff uses noxious chemicals like nitrates, whereas home smoking just uses salt. I don’ view it as any more of a problem than having a wood stove (which is not brilliant for one’ lungs).

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I agree with other comments above about this one. Smoked food certainly can be a a trigger in people with the right (wrong!) susceptibility but, to be honest, so can almost anything if you happen to have those genes or whatever. I think it’s a question of not overdoing it, if you like smoked food (i only tend to smoke mine lightly) and definitely avoiding noxious chemicals, so not using treated wood or nitrates or whatever.

I tend to be just slightly sceptical about the pronouncements from on high about food safety as they inevitably tend to be somewhat broad-brush. Does everyone remember how we were all supposed to avoid eggs because they were packed with chlorestorol and then it was discovered that there was more than one sort of chlorestorol and actually eggs were rather good?

You must live in the right area @stella! Locally smoked duck breast is very rare up here in the frozen north :cry:

It’s pretty well freezing here… at the moment… brrrr.

I feel the need for chocolate and alcohol… :wink: :wink:


Just wanted to add to my previous experiences!

Having had my first success with smoked duck breast (following a really helpful French YouTube video) there’s been a pause on cold smoking for us, at least partly because it’s difficult to keep the temperature suitably low outside when the weather is incredibly hot.

So… first attempts at hot smoking and, I must say, rather successful despite appearing to get most things wrong. Since my partner loves smoked mackerel pate, that fish was the obvious first choice and we even tried the results out (in pate form) on some French friends. Apart from insisting that what we had produced was rillettes not pate, they really liked it and ate the lot!

Any other suggestions for tasty hot smoking? I’m not really sure about whether I fancy hot smoked salmon but it’s a possible, I suppose…

There’s a restaurant in Antwerp I used to go to which had home made hot smoked salmon and it was fantastic :slightly_smiling_face:

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Latest attempt – spare ribs

Yum Yum Yum


How long did you smoke those for, @andyw ? It’s certainly not something I’ve tried yet…