Cold Smoked Cheese Easy Brie Appetizer might just be the hit of your next party. Take your wine and cheese party in a whole new and very interesting direction.
Wood pellets, a cold smoker container, and some great brie produce the best smoked cheese you have ever tasted.
When I first tried cold smoked brie at one of the many grilling classes we have attended, I was hooked. Even my husband (who is not a brie lover) thought the smoked brie appetizer we made was REALLY good. I am so glad I can convert those taste buds of his to enjoy the good things in life. Have you tried smoked apples?
Have you tried smoked cheddar? We often have it in the house, especially when Costco puts it on sale. Once we found out how to make it ourselves, there is no need to buy it anymore. It is easy to do and gives you the option to try lots of cold smoked cheese recipes. The different combinations of paring woods and cheeses are endless.
Totally different than pit smoking. If you know anything about hot smoking, controlling the temperature is vital. My husband loves his Flame Boss 300 WiFi.
WHAT IS COLD SMOKED CHEESE?
If you have ever bought smoked cheese at the store you know it can be expensive. Flavour is added to cheese with the help of wood chips or pellets using a low temperature. The cheese is not cooked but infused with a smokey flavour from the outside. What a great way to add some personality and elevate the taste of humble cheese. Take ordinary cheese and make it extraordinary.
For this cold smoked cheese recipe, we re-created the originally smoked brie appetizer we had at our cooking class. Did you know that Canada has some fantastic cheese? Look for the Dairy Farmers of Canada logo next time you shop for your selection of cheese.
COLD SMOKED BASICS
There are several methods to cold smoke cheese. You can use a gas grill or charcoal grill. My hubby is a BBQ fanatic (yup he has all the toys). For this smoked cheese recipe, we used his KEG charcoal grill (minus the charcoal). When we smoked cheese in class it was done on a gas grill (minus the heat).
So, you may ask if there is NO HEAT involved, how do you smoke cheese? You use a smoker container. Some can be tubes, others can be DIY foil pouches. In both our cooking class and our own cheese smoking, we used a cold smoking tray by *A-Maze-N.
The lowdown to smoking cheese is pretty simple:
- choose your cheese (bring it to room temperature prior to smoking)
- choose your wood pellet flavour (we used apple, more info below)
- fill your smoking container with the pellets
- place inside the grill and light
- close lid (for several minutes) to start the smoking process
- add the cheese on the rack (not too close to the smoker box, you don’t want the cheese to melt from the heat)
- monitor the heat inside the grill (you want to keep it under 90 degrees F)
- continue to smoke till you reach your desired level of flavour (hard cheeses will take longer than soft cheeses)
Cold smoking on a cool day is ideal. It makes it much easier to control the temperature inside the grill. The day we smoked our cheese it was a million degrees outside.
How long does it take to cold smoke cheese? Hubby cold smoked the brie for 80 minutes. Depending on the outside temperature, and the type of cheese you choose, you can cold smoke anywhere from 30 minutes to 4 hours.
Can you freeze smoked cheese? Yes, but I would only freeze HARD cheeses. Make sure they are wrapped REALLY WELL (vacuum sealing is ideal) to prevent freezer burn. You can usually keep it for about 2 months in the freezer.
Can you eat smoked cheese right away? The flavour of the cheese right off the grill will be milder than when you store it in the fridge. In fact, just like fine wine (and women LOL) if you can let it sit for a week or so, the flavour will be over the top fantastic. Be sure to wrap it tightly in plastic wrap.
Of course, when you smoke brie, how can you not eat it right away? Warm, gooey and delicious the absolute BEST time to eat it!!
BEST CHEESE TO SMOKE
This is the fun part (along with choosing the wood flavours). Just about any cheese that will not fall apart will work. Large blocks of cheese should be cut into smaller pieces (but DO NOT cut the brie). That would be a tragedy!
- Monterey Jack
As for the wood flavours, you can go from mild (like apple and cherry) to strong (like hickory and mesquite). The choices are ALL personal preference. Lots of tasty options for your eating pleasure.
This cold smoked brie was our Sunday afternoon appetizer. Paired perfectly with wine (who would have thought LOL). We ate it right off the grill. Sliced nice and warm, runny wedges of goodness, put them on some crackers (or straight to my mouth). Piled on some spicy wine jam, added some charcuterie meats and called it dinner.
If you like warm cheese, mini stuffed peppers make a GREAT party starter. Have you ever tried Grilled Shishito Peppers? They have a nice smokey flavour, and totally addictive. You won’t be able to eat just one.
We have been totally enjoying grilling season this year. From appetizers like Strawberry Bruschetta to desserts like Watermelon Pizza, and Grilled Balsamic Strawberries, cheese seems to be the common denominator in many recipes. Cold Smoked Cheese Easy Brie Appetizer certainly will be happening a few more times (all year long).
What is your favourite type of cheese?
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Cold Smoked Cheese Easy Brie Appetizer
- 21 ounces Brie cheese wheel (brought to room temperature)
- Fill your smoker container with your choice of pellets.
- Place inside your grill, and ignite. Close the lid for a few minutes to create some smoke.
- Place the room temperature cheese on the grill (not near the smoker container).
- Close the lid, and smoke until your desired level of flavour. We smoked ours for about 80 minutes. **NOTE** Be sure the internal temperature of your grill stays under 90ºF...YOU DON'T WANT TO COOK/MELT THE CHEESE.
- When done, remove from grill.
- Place on a board, along with a cheese knife, crackers, meats, and toppings.