Breville USA is a manufacturer and marketer of small home appliances and parent company of PolyScience Culinary, who many of you know as one of the leading sous vide machine manufacturers, including products such as the PolyScience Creative. Breville holds numerous patents on a variety of household appliances (they created the original sandwich toaster, after all), so it’s no surprise you’ll find a few creative devices for sale on their website. Perhaps the most interesting is the Breville Smoking Gun – a hand-held cold smoke infuser that’s designed to add smokey flavor without cooking your food. This just happens to be perfect for sous vide, so naturally I had to get my hands on one to test it out. Let’s jump right into my smoking gun review.
Review: Smoking Gun
Unboxing and Setup
The smoking gun comes tightly packed in organized packaging that displays all of the contents. Inside the box, you will find the Breville Smoking Gun, removable hose, mesh woodchip insert, applewood and hickory woodchips, and 4 batteries. To get started, simply attach the nozzle to the smoking gun, place your mesh insert into the top until it clicks into place, and add your batteries. You can now test to make sure it works fine by switching the power on (either high or low) – all this does is turn a fan on to blow air through the hose. Once you’ve confirmed you’re good to go, pick out which flavor you want to use!
For the test, I opted to smoke some sous vide pork belly I cooked up using my PolyScience CREATIVE circulator. After a full 10 hours in the water bath, I had perfectly cooked pork belly, but no smokiness. So I tossed a few pieces into a bowl, covered it with saran wrap, and got ready for my first attempt. I placed a small amount of applewood chips into the mesh basket, inserted the nozzle into the bowl, turned the fan on high, and lit the woodchips with a lighter.
Boom – tons of smoke! But… nearly all of it escaped from the bowl. After my first attempt, I learned that the hardest part about this device is knowing how to use saran wrap. You can see in the photo below that a lot of the smoke immediately left the bowl, so I was forced to try this again.
Let’s try this again. I emptied the mesh basket and added new chips, grabbed more saran wrap, and did a much better job at sealing it. This time the bowl filled with smoke so that I could no longer see what was inside. I let the pork sit with the smoke for about 5-6 minutes before I decided I was too hungry.
Overall the pork belly did have a smokiness bite to it, so I consider this a win. It obviously won’t create that incredibly deep smoke flavor you get from using a full-size Weber Smokey Mountain or one of the other’s on our list of best smokers, but for how easy this is and how short of time it sits in the smoke, I was surprised by the amount of flavor it did have. I honestly was not expecting to taste it much at all.
I added the finished smoked pork belly to a miso ramen, finished with a sous vide egg cooked for 15 minutes at 167F.
Overall, the smoker is an awesome addition to sous vide cooking to get some added flavor. It obviously does not compare to a real, traditional smoker, as the flavor from the smoking gun is much more subtle. Because of this, I actually recommend to use the Breville Smoker for dishes such as smoked cheese, smoked butters/sauces, and even desserts (Breville put out a few great smoked recipes to use with the product). You can find the Smoking Gun on Breville’s website or on Amazon.