Episode 310: Cured and Smoked

In humankind’s long march to food security, two ancient preserving techniques have stood out over the millennia: curing and smoking. The first involves preserving foods with salt, soy sauce, or sodium nitrite—ingredients that add flavor while they inhibit bacterial activity. The second technique involves blasting foods with flavorful clouds of wood smoke. This, too, impedes spoilage, but even more importantly, both techniques build distinctive flavors. Today, we’re pushing the envelope on traditional curing and smoking.