Wednesday, October 2, 2013

File This Under Only Mildly Interesting... Center Square Hardwood Smoked Salt and Sausage (Stump Table and Apple Crusher Project Too!)

Some time back a friend of mine who resides in the Center Square neighborhood of Albany informed me that a portion of a large tree (I think it was a maple, should have looked at the leaves at the time) had fallen in his yard. He had had it chopped up and was simply going to dispose of it! Heavens no, I said. I hate to see good, mature hardwood go to waste... So I hopped in the truck and headed into the heart of the city in which I was born and bred and grabbed me up some native Albany hardwood.

After curing the two large pieces of wood for some time I decided on a couple of courses of action for using it. The first thing I made was a little stump table. I removed the bark, sanded the wood extensively, and then used a couple different stains and some poly. Now it is in the corner of my foyer by the window and we use it as a stand for vases of flowers and such. Even my wife who was initially aghast at the thought of stump furniture in the house came around to liking it...

I had some nice big chunks of the wood left over from leveling off one of the stumps so I immediately thought it might be neat to do some smoking with it. The concept of sausage smoked with indigenous Albany/Center Square hardwood just appealed to me as sort of a neat idear... So I did just that. I took two chubs of all-beef Göteborg style summer sausage and some coarse sea salt and smoked them up.

Everything came out great.

From the scent of the smoke and the final flavor I am almost certain it was maple wood (can't check as the rest of the tree has expired and my buddy doesn't remember). By the way, I have sort of hacked my Bradley smoker rig. I have found that I can just put large-ish chunks of soaked hardwood on the heating element and I can avoid buying their proprietary hockey puck thingies. Works great for cold smoking with the cold smoke box I have for it.

I have been up to no end of wood-projects lately. Look at this one-

This will eventually become the grinding wheel of an apple crusher I am constructing for the purpose of making apple cider. That wheel of wood is part of the great big maple from my backyard.

OK, I am done now... Just what you wanted to do, eh? Read me prattling on about wood and trees... I can be frightfully droll sometimes. It is part of my charm.


  1. Nice project! BTW, I love the table. Any ideas on where to find apple wood? I've been buying up the stupid chunks in bags as Big Box Hardware, but would prefer actual logs. I keep finding more stuff I want to smoke, and expect to be doing this well into cold season.

    1. Hmmm... I would ask at any of the local orchards, I am sure they might let you scavenge a log or two... Then you could just put it somewhere to cure for a while and then chop it up for smoking.


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