I have a 3 lb wheel of gouda in the ripening phase. I'd like to smoke it, but my last 2 goudas didn't turn out as I expected. I'm using hickory grill kickers ( http://www.grillkicker.com/
) using this method: http://www.smokepistol.co.uk/Smoked%20Cheese.pdf
but instead using an empty, covered grill instead of a cardboard box.
The first time, I smoked it for about 30 minutes. I think it got a little warmer than it should have because it started dripping fat. After that I put it in the fridge to firm up and then waxed it. After aging for about 3 months, the taste was okay (although a bit more "cheddary" than I was hoping for) and the smokiness just about right, however the texture was kind of dry. Overall, a bit disappointing.
The second time I smoked it for the same amount of time, but it was colder outside and it didn't precipitate as much fat. However, because #1 made my entire fridge and leftover wax smell like smoke, I decided to vacuum seal this cheese instead of waxing. After about 3 months, it tasted extremely bitter, but the texture was right on!
Anyway, to make a long story short, what's the best way to smoke a cheese? The reason I try smoking before I age is because I want the entire cheese to have a smoke flavor and not just the rind.
Thanks for any suggestions!