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ChrisTaylor

Entry-level smoking gun

12 posts in this topic

http://www.redspooncompany.com/index.php/molecular-gastronomy/tools/smoke/smoke-gun-kit.html

By AUD standards and by my measures, that's a reasonable price for something I want but wouldn't use frequently. Does anyone recognise this device (the website doesn't list a brand and the image shows a logo I don't recognise)? What sets this apart from, say, the Polyscience gun (also avaliable on the website for $120)? I get that this one is cheaper, but obviously it's a waste of money if the unit fails quickly.


Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

Melbourne
Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between

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I had a little experience with units like that back in my college days (although not for cooking >< ) . I think something like that would work out fine for light duty smoking

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I bought one recently Chris. Somewhat cheaply made but it works well enough. Basically it is a mini vacuum cleaner such as one you use to clean computer keyboards. It is set up to blow out rather than suck in and has a small brass receptacle for the sawdust to go into on the top (think a miniaturised version of the tobacco bowl on a hookah). It also comes with a mini mesh filter to stop the burning sawdust falling down into the mechanism. It is run by 4 AA batteries. You light the sawdust in the top and press a button on the side. I experimented with it by putting some tea leaves in the top and lighting them. It pours out a lot of smoke over a short period of time.


Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four.
Unless there are three other people." Orson Welles
My eG Foodblog

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Thanks for the write up, Nick. Having poked around online, tho', it's become clear that for only a little more I could ghetto engineer a cold smoker. A cold smoker would obviously be a bulky piece of kit but would probably do more of what I am likely to want to do with smoke than a gun could.


Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

Melbourne
Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between

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I've seen a lot of ideas online about making a ghetto cold smoker using a coffee can, soldering iron and a thermostat (PID or non). I saw an interesting video of Jordi and Juan Roca smoking a cigar using some kind of hand pump, blowing the smoke into the bowl of a stand mixer while whipping cream to make a cigar infused whipped cream. The video was at the end of their Harvard lecture.

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An alternative that works almost as well as a smoke gun is to simply do the following:

1. Place the food to be smoked on a plate

2. Use a stovetop smoker (or sauce pot/skillet/etc) and place your smoke-ables (wood chips, tea leaves, etc.) in a small pile in the middle of the smoker.

3. Place on the stove and turn the heat up to medium high (or burn with a torch)

4. Once you detect a small amount of smoke escaping, place a glass serving lid or pitcher (upside down) over the pile of chips

5. Once the pitcher is filled with dense smoke, very quickly transfer it to the plate, capturing the food within.

I've used this to great effect, although it is only good for short < 10 minutes smoking times, since the smoke eventually condenses or dissipates.

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http://www.redspooncompany.com/index.php/molecular-gastronomy/tools/smoke/smoke-gun-kit.html

By AUD standards and by my measures, that's a reasonable price for something I want but wouldn't use frequently. Does anyone recognise this device (the website doesn't list a brand and the image shows a logo I don't recognise)? What sets this apart from, say, the Polyscience gun (also avaliable on the website for $120)? I get that this one is cheaper, but obviously it's a waste of money if the unit fails quickly.

I own one of these and it is actually quite nice for occasional use. Even though you can't do large batch cold smoking, it is fine for smoking cheeses, salt, vegetables and smaller pieces of fish. The smoke won't penetrate deep, but you can use it to create a Heston Blumenthal wow effect at the table :-)

I bought mine here, as i live in Europe: http://www.mcc-shop.com/

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I bought a uses smoking gun Off eBay for $50. Only used once, in a demo I think. Still haven't used it though...

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An alternative that works almost as well as a smoke gun is to simply do the following:

1. Place the food to be smoked on a plate

2. Use a stovetop smoker (or sauce pot/skillet/etc) and place your smoke-ables (wood chips, tea leaves, etc.) in a small pile in the middle of the smoker.

3. Place on the stove and turn the heat up to medium high (or burn with a torch)

4. Once you detect a small amount of smoke escaping, place a glass serving lid or pitcher (upside down) over the pile of chips

5. Once the pitcher is filled with dense smoke, very quickly transfer it to the plate, capturing the food within.

I've used this to great effect, although it is only good for short < 10 minutes smoking times, since the smoke eventually condenses or dissipates.

No offense intended (I'm probably missing something) but the pitcher of smoke sounds like an unnecessary step to me. Why not put the plate of material to be smoked inside the pot that contains the smoking material? For instance: put the chips or tea leaves in a foil packet on the bottom of the pot, then put the food to be smoked in a steamer over the pile, and put the lid on the pot? Sally Schneider advocates something along those lines for smoking in a wok.

Edited to add the pot lid.


Edited by Smithy (log)

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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Thanks for the write up, Nick. Having poked around online, tho', it's become clear that for only a little more I could ghetto engineer a cold smoker. A cold smoker would obviously be a bulky piece of kit but would probably do more of what I am likely to want to do with smoke than a gun could.

I built something along the lines of this: http://www.smoker-cooking.com/build-a-cold-smoker.html and it only cost $4 for the soldering iron. With some care one could cold-smoke in a cardboard box.

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Thanks for the write up, Nick. Having poked around online, tho', it's become clear that for only a little more I could ghetto engineer a cold smoker. A cold smoker would obviously be a bulky piece of kit but would probably do more of what I am likely to want to do with smoke than a gun could.

I built something along the lines of this: http://www.smoker-co...old-smoker.html and it only cost $4 for the soldering iron. With some care one could cold-smoke in a cardboard box.

I took it one step forward and attached a fitting to an air pump to actively pump smoke into my smoker when cold smoking. You can barely see the air hose leading to the bottom of the can.

CIMG6171.JPG

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