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GIVEAWAY: Hot Smoking Starter Kit

After the success of my home-cured and home-smoked bacon, the lovely people of Hot Smoked contacted me to see if I’d be interested in trying out their new Hot Smoking Starter Pack.

Of course, I was only too happy to receive it and started planning a whole range of smoked food to cook with the help of the pack. It includes wood chips and a smoker box for short, fast smoking of foods such such as chicken, fish and vegetables as well as wood chunks for longer, slower smoking of dishes such as beef brisket. Also included is a brilliant little book which gives a lot of information for beginners to hot smoking and it’s all packed inside a great canvas bag which you can use to keep all the bits and pieces together for storage.

The pack can be used with almost any lidded barbecue; no need to buy an expensive hot smoker, unless you really want to!

As soon as I received this pack, I knew what I wanted to cook with it; beef brisket. This recipe and method is inside the book but as usual I ad-libbed it a little bit. I took pictures at each stage so I could show just how easy it is!

I started with a joint of brisket which is usually supplied rolled and tied in the UK. I just untied it and laid it flat, then used my Andrew James Flavour Injector to inject the meat with Dr Pepper. The book suggests using cola, but I’ve made some great pork ribs with Dr Pepper and decided to give that a go.

The beef then went in the fridge overnight to marinate and give the Dr Pepper a chance to break down the fibres in the meat; this leads to a more tender and juicy end result.

I used the indirect grilling method to cook the brisket, putting the hot coals and chunk of wood in one side of a barbecue with the meat over the other side. This means the meat cooks like a conventional oven, rather than heat only coming from below. I also set up the air vents so the smoke passed over the meat, flavouring it on the way.

Unfortunately, I ran into some issues here. After 2 hours the meat just wasn’t cooked; I think my charcoal was old stock in the shop and had been stored in a damp warehouse so it didn’t light and/or burn very well. I decided at this point to pop the meat into a low oven to finish it off.

I don’t think the meat suffered at all for it though. The finished brisket was delicious; the rub on the outside was spicy but had loads of flavour. It was gently smoked, with a nice smokey flavour but without being too overpowering. Of course, being cooked low and slow it was very tender too.

So, what did I serve my beef brisket with? Sweet potato fries and homemade slaw, of course!

All things considered, I’m really pleased with the results given from the pack and I have only used a little of the rub and one chunk of oak. I still have over 90% of the pack left and I’m really looking forward to exploring some of the other recipes in the book and giving my own spin on them. 

The instruction book is really informative and gives a lot of the background required to effectively smoke your own dishes. My head is already buzzing with ideas for what to smoke next. Watch this space!

Having been so impressed by this pack, I was delighted when Hot Smoked said they would provide another pack for one of my lucky readers to win in a giveaway.

To enter, just leave me a comment to tell me what your favourite smoked food(s) is/are and enter your details into the box below. You can get additional entries into the competition by completing the other activities too! Competition ends next Thursday, 19th Feb.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to postage costs, this competition is open to entrants in the UK ONLY.

I look forward to hearing from you and wish you good luck with the giveaway!

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