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I’ve cold smoked raw steaks several times before cooking on a gas grill or vacuum packing for freezing. I haven’t had any ill effects so far. That’s why I cold smoked the raw side pork first. The heating element and wood chip box is covered by an insulated plate, then a pan of ice is set on top. The meat is on a rack above the ice. The smoker is only on for 20 minutes then shut off. No heat reaches the meat. I’ve attached a picture showing the cold smoke process on 8 oz. blocks of cheese.
To see if there are any flavor differences, the next time I will try the cold smoking after the cure, before the meat goes into the UMAi Dry bag.