Smoking food what you have caught, stalked or killed is so simple, and deals with the freezerful of game

Everyone who shoots, fishes or stalks has a freezerful of dead stuff, some of it rivalling the Siberian mammoth for its years in icy entombment. Those ancient pheasant and pigeon breasts are succulent once smoked, yet few of us do it. It’s not as though the process is difficult – we have been using it for millennia, after all – but it appears complex. Why not learn how to smoke food?

Mike Robinson, a Field contributor and TV chef, is a wild-game expert and runs smoking courses at his Pot Kiln pub in Berkshire. “Smoking , curing and preserving are ancient techniques that bring amazing flavours to game and fish. Easy when you know what to do and simple to master; this course gives you a proper grounding for home smoking and curing.” The cost is £180 a day, including VAT.

Farther north, Jo Hampson and Georgina Perkins own Smoky Jo’s in Shap, Cumbria. They run a one-day course, costing £119, showing students how to hot- and cold-smoke 14 different types of food using seven types of smoker. The pupils smoke their own lunch and go home with a goodie bag.

Mike Stockton, who teaches at Teeside University, went on their day and now “owns two cold smokers, a hot smoker and a filing cabinet ready to be turned into a four-level cold smoker. This Christmas I smoked sides of salmon, garlic, cheese, sausages and much more for friends and loved every moment.”
Mike Robinson, tel 01635 200200

Smoky Jo’s, tel 01931 716638