How to Smoke Meat in a Smoke House

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Smoking meat can be a great way to add a special flavoring to any meal. When smoking meat in a smoke house the goal is not to cook the meat, but to cure it or preserve it for later cooking. Smoked meat often tastes richer and meatier than meat that's just cooked in a stove or on a barbeque. Follow the basic instructions for smoking meat to have the best tasting meal on your table.

Things You'll Need

  • Smokehouse with firebox and drum
  • Dry wood
  • Green wood
  • Meat
  • Build a fire in the smoke house's firebox with completely dry wood. Allow the fire to burn down to just red coals. This can take a few hours, depending on the size of your fire.

  • Add green wood to the coals to rekindle the fire. Green wood is moister than the dry wood, which limits the temperature that the fire can reach. If you do not have access to green wood, use wood that is only slightly dry. The wood should begin to smolder and produce smoke, but not burn with flame.

  • Hang meat in the drum. If there is more than one piece of meat, separate the pieces by at least six inches. Cover the drum with its lid and weight down the cover with a stone or brick.

  • Allow the meat to smoke in the drum at least a few hours. Time will vary depending on the temperature and the meat product. When fully smoked, the meat will be a light brown color.

Tips & Warnings

  • Smoke only meat that has had time to dry completely. This is usually done by hanging the meat in a dry area. Wet meat will not smoke properly because of the excessive moisture.
  • During smoking, the temperature in the drum should not exceed 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Raise the lid of the drum slightly to allow cool air in if the temperature gets too hot.
  • Smoked meat is not cooked meat. Smoking does not cook the meat all the way through. Cook the meat thoroughly before consuming.

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