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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Where I live the cheese smoking season has come to a close, but I did manage to get in a couple of final smokes in March and April. Start early in the morning when outside temps are lowest because if it gets over 90 degrees inside the Weber you run the risk of creating a melted "fondue", not good. Harder cheeses are the best to work with as they have a higher melting point, cheddar, monterey jack, pepper jack, colby, mozzarella, etc. I once smoked some swiss but didn't care for the taste.
This process is called "cold smoking" as the ONLY heat comes from the smoke source itself and the outside air temperature, in this case I used a mix of 75% apple and 25% cherry pellets in an A-MAZE-N stainless steel smoke tube. I personally like to take 2 to 21/2 hours to complete the process.
On previous smokes I've used ziplock bags but always a little leery about long term storage and air in the bags so I started researching vacuum sealers and landed on a Nesco Vs-12 and never looked back, should have made this move years ago.
Now onto the hardest part, the minimum two week rest period in the refrigerator before opening the first vacpac. This (seems forever!) time period allows the coated surface smoke to absorb into the block, you can see it in the bottom photo around the perimeter edge of a slice of pepper jack.
"Oh my gracious!" This is an absolute must do and will work in any BBQ or smoker that has a thermometer, lid and a controllable vent system.

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