Here are some Customer experiments with different Tobacco Varieties:
I did a little experimenting with some tobacco blends today. I have a sore throat so I came up with a blend that is light and smooth, but I realized that if I added cloves to it I could make a clove cigarette or "kretek" as it's called.
At first I tried 75% Turkish and 25% flue cured with some powdered cloves in a standard cigarette tube. It was too light for me so I tried my American Spirit blend. The cloves used were some that I purchased from a hippy dippy health food store near my house. They were cheap so I bought an ounce! I crushed up four of them and added the cloves to a gram of cigarette tobacco. I used menthol filters and a blueberry flavored rolling paper. The whole thing looked like a joint, but it smoked VERY nicely, the flavor and aroma was top notch, and due to the flavored papers the cigarette left a nice sweet and savory taste on my lips. After smokin' one my through felt better, it didn't hurt at all to swallow. The cool part? They crackle when you toke them! ;)
I mixed about 1 ounce of Virgina bright leaf, three grams of Turkish, and three grams of burly all very finely cut. I used a Bugler filtered cigarette tube loaded with this blend. It smelled and tasted just like an unfiltered Camel (really good since I love those) but the filter was really clean when I finished. There was very little tar in that blend! It was a filtered cigarette that tasted like an unfiltered one, but with the same nicotine level if not a little higher due to the burly! :D You aught to give that blend a shot, it's really good! Also, feel free to publish this recipe on your website if you'd like.
I've got an idea for a light cigarette blend. I'm thinking I'll cut some Maryland and a little Virginia into shag, and blend a little VA in there, maybe around 25%. The Maryland will provide a good and light, earthy, and smooth flavor, but with just a little Virginia to give it some more body and sweeten it a little. The good part about this is the Maryland has a more neutral flavor, thus letting the flavor of the VA get through but it's not as strong and harsh as straight VA. I'll let you know how that turns out!
Always store your whole leafs and finished tobacco products at or around 70% humidity!
So you can just leave it in the bag it comes in and re close tightly after each use or you could invest in a small humidor or build your own ( a tupperware container with lid works well )
When tobacco gets dry, it becomes harsh, so if your leaves are too dry just spritz with a little water and reseal the container.
Whether or not to shred the tobacco for storage is completely up to you.
A customer of mine had some words of wisdom on this subject, as well as a good recipe:
Casing a tobacco twist isn't really necessary, but if it's intended for chew as well as pipe smoking you can case it. Soaking overnight isn't really necessary as long as you have the tobacco wet and pliable. About an hour should do, if you soak it long then it will hit the throat smoother if inhaled. Casing tobacco is relatively easy. Just take some fresh apple juice, put it in a pan, heat it on medium until some water boils off, add about enough molasses to cover the bottom of the pan, then turn it on low. You should have a thick syrup. Then you take the moist tobacco leaf, dip it in the syrup until it's nicely coated, and twist it. It's that simple! Just don't use too much or you will end up with something too sticky, but if it's tacky that's fine. Three leaves works well for a twist of tobacco, I usually use three average sized leaves or four if they are skinny.
More from Levi
Toasted Tobacco Cigarette Recipe
By the way, I have been doing some blending with that Virgina tobacco you sent me. I figured out a couple great recipes for cigarette tobacco.
For a blend that is nice and full flavored and strong get yourself seven ounces of Virginia, and three ounces of KY burly. Those two by themselves can be a bit harsh, straight Virgina tends to dry out the throat and mouth, a cigarette made from pure burly tobacco will make you feel like you've had a couple beers there's so much nicotine in it. But together they make for a very nice smoke similar to Natural American Spirit. Use a coffee grinder to grind small amounts of tobacco and pulse it to get the texture just right to roll with. You can keep it in a mason jar for storage, and use a small piece of damp sea sponge to humidify the tobacco. So you are going to want about 75-80% Virgina, and 25-30% burly for this recipe.
Toasting tobacco make it less harsh, it make the flavor so much better and it hits the throat smoother (gotta watch out for the T-zone, haha!)
To toast your tobacco you are going to need a heat source like a stove or a hot plate, a nice cast iron frying pan (or a stainless one) and of course your tobacco all shredded up. Start by laying the tobacco out on the surface of the pan to cover the bottom in a layer that is roughly 1/4" deep. Put the burner on a low-medium setting, and let it heat up until the tobacco starts to let off a little smoke. Stir it, until it gets this rich, toasted golden brown color. Toasting tobacco is common in European countries such as Holland. It's a very tasty smoke and reminds me of the Lucky Strike unfiltered I used to smoke, you know the kind in the soft pack. This really makes it taste great and removes some of the excess nicotine.
If you'd like you can post that on your website, I'm sure your customers would appreciate a good cigarette tobacco recipe. This one is great, if you toast the golden Virgina but not the burly it really compliments the burly nicely and lets it come through better for a nice full bodied flavor.
Hope you had a great 4th of July and take care!
This one gets a little more complicated, not!!
Again, remove the mid stem and roll up several leaf halfes very tightely.
Cut into very fine strips, using a sharp knife.
Or you can invest in a tobacco shredder, such as the "CUTHOF" tobacco shredder, and roll away!!
So... you would like to know how to process whole leaf tobacco?
If you are planing on injecting filtered cigarette tubes, it is quiet simple.
All you need is a kitchen blender.
First remove the mid stem of the leaf then chop two or three leaf half's to desired consistency in the blender.
Check a commercially made cigarette for tobacco size.
Use an cigarette injector to fill your cigarette tubes
Always store your tobacco and finished cigarettes at 70% humidity!
For alternative processing techniques, check out this U Tube video, by one of my customers, with his consent
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