Whole Leaf Tobacco

A Few Homemade Dip Questions From A Noob!

tullius

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My third try at homemade dip similar to grizzly snuff finally turned out better than the original. Here's what I did:

114g equal parts by wt. (1/8" shred, all tobaccos WLT) dark air cured, TN dark fire cured, misc. VA stems​
114g distilled water​
18g coarse (kosher) salt​
5g sodium carbonate (baking soda cooked in oven @ 300F for 1 hour)​

  • Bake/dry tobaccos in oven at 275F for 1 hr, pulverize in food processor, sift, pulverize and sift again.
  • Add salt to water and gently heat until salt dissolves.
  • Mix salt water solution into pulverized tobacco thoroughly.
  • Pack mixture tightly into glass canning jars, top with lids, vacuum seal, add rings, cook in water bath at 195F for 8 hours, rest overnight.
  • In mixing bowl, dissolve sodium carbonate in 10g room temp distilled water and add cooked tobacco mixture. Mix well.
  • Cover tightly with plastic wrap and rest in refrigerator overnight.
  • Add 25g distilled water, mix well.
  • Vacuum seal and store in refrigerator, use as needed.

I tried the first rub after 24 hrs on an empty stomach, it was excellent. Made my head spin a little, and I've been chewing copenhagen and grizzly since I was 14.
Better after 1-2 weeks rest.

Thanks very much to jitterbugdude for his posts, they helped me a lot.
 

tullius

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I should clarify: the weight of the tobacco flour was calculated after drying/pulverizing/sifting, and the added water in the instructions is in addition to the 114g specified in the ingredient list.
 

deluxestogie

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That seems like a straightforward enough recipe. The following questions are not intended to snipe, but to clarify the instructions (for possible inclusion in a WLT wiki).

What do you mean by "misc. VA stems"?
What is the benefit of "coarse" salt, vs. granulated salt, if it will be completely dissolved prior to use?
What is the reason for suggesting that the salt be kosher? Wouldn't simply non-iodized table salt provide the identical ingredient?

"...into glass canning jars, top with lids, vacuum seal, add rings..."

The vacuum sealing doesn't happen until after they are heated and allowed to cool. So the meaning of that is unclear.

You appear to be "canning" the initial mixture in sealed jars, then opening the sealed jars, then transferring the canned/cooked mixture into a mixing bowl, for mixing into the NaCO solution. The following day, you add more water and mix.

What container and mechanism is "vacuum seal"-ing the final mixture for storage?

Thanks,
Bob
 

GreenDragon

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When using salt in a recipe, it's good to specify the size/type/brand of salt so that the net amount added is the same. Some are much more "fluffy" than others due to grain size and manufacturing process. For instance:

1 teaspoon table salt = 1 1/2 teaspoons Morton kosher salt = 2 teaspoons Diamond Crystal kosher salt
 

tullius

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What do you mean by "misc. VA stems"?
Just that. Have a bag of miscellaneous stems from deribbing various flue cured VA tobaccos that I'm using for their hydroscopic and textural properties, and to use them up. Grabbed a handful and added enough to comprise 1/3 of the weight of the tobacco before drying & pulverizing.

What is the benefit of "coarse" salt, vs. granulated salt, if it will be completely dissolved prior to use?
What is the reason for suggesting that the salt be kosher? Wouldn't simply non-iodized table salt provide the identical ingredient?

Matter of record. Used Morton coarse kosher salt in this batch. Wanted to avoid anticaking agents because dip is supposed to clump, and I'm already adding sodium carbonate later. After, I saw this salt contains yellow prussiate of soda as anticaking agent. Next time I'll use the coarse Italian sea salt I have, which contains no added anticaking agents. I really don't think any of this is critical, as long as you go by weight and not volume.

"...into glass canning jars, top with lids, vacuum seal, add rings..."

The vacuum sealing doesn't happen until after they are heated and allowed to cool. So the meaning of that is unclear.

I vacuum seal prior to putting the rings on and immersing in the water bath. This assures me no outside water will get into the jars, and (the real reason I do this) the jars don't float. You can skip this step and have fine results, and the jars will seal normally, but then you have to hold/weight the jars down to keep them immersed.

You appear to be "canning" the initial mixture in sealed jars, then opening the sealed jars, then transferring the canned/cooked mixture into a mixing bowl, for mixing into the NaCO solution. The following day, you add more water and mix.

Na2CO3 solution, sodium carbonate + water, but otherwise yes.

What container and mechanism is "vacuum seal"-ing the final mixture for storage?

Containers are the same regular mason jars & lids used for cooking/canning. For this and the initial vacuum sealing of the jars, I use a foodsaver brand mason jar sealing attachment and an Ambiano brand vacuum sealing machine from Aldi. Does both large mouth and small mouth jars and old canning lids can be reused indefinitely if you're careful not to bend them when removing.

I should have bought one of these machines years ago, it has already paid for itself several times over: lunch meat & cheeses keep indefinitely in fridge, raw meat well over a week, coffee a year, frozen meat cuts over 2 years with no freezer burn. Great for sealing & storing tobacco long term without having to worry about mold or stand over a hot canner.


When using salt in a recipe, it's good to specify the size/type/brand of salt so that the net amount added is the same. Some are much more "fluffy" than others due to grain size and manufacturing process. For instance:

1 teaspoon table salt = 1 1/2 teaspoons Morton kosher salt = 2 teaspoons Diamond Crystal kosher salt

Very true for volume, but not so much by weight. For the record, I used Morton coarse kosher salt in the recipe.
 

tullius

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I am in your boat! However, I am trying to see if I can age mine without cooking it? There are so many good thread here, I am just trying to understand a majority of what is being said as it relates to Dip, Snuff and Snuss. Thanks for your thread and please keep me in the loop. I will be ordering some leaves **** tomorrow and hopefully starting something up as soon as they arrive! Right now it appears my only real options in the "Organic" field are American & Canadian Flu Cured and Burley. I'm not a health freak but I dip two cans a day, so if I can limit some of the chemicals I'm placing into my mouth 14+ Hours a day, the better.
The first batch I did was uncooked, 50% stems: something to put in the lip but weirdly blonde, not really dip, not all that good, no buzz.

Second batch I cooked at 195F for 3 hrs, 50% stems, salted it a little: better color, not the right flavor, little buzz.

Third batch cooked @ 195F for 8 hrs., 33% stems, 7% coarse salt (by weight), 2% (by weight) sodium carbonate: TASTES GREAT, PLENTY BUZZ
 

ChinaVoodoo

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The first batch I did was uncooked, 50% stems: something to put in the lip but weirdly blonde, not really dip, not all that good, no buzz.

Second batch I cooked at 195F for 3 hrs, 50% stems, salted it a little: better color, not the right flavor, little buzz.

Third batch cooked @ 195F for 8 hrs., 33% stems, 7% coarse salt (by weight), 2% (by weight) sodium carbonate: TASTES GREAT, PLENTY BUZZ
The buzz probably comes from changing the pH with the sodium carbonate.
 

nunapitchuk

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OK, I have a couple of questions about making dip. First my background info:

I am using pipe tobacco because that is the most economical that I have available. 16 oz bags for about $21. Thinking of trying to order whole leaf, but because of shipping to AK I need to order several pounds to get a good price. I do not know anything about what kind of whole leaf tobacco would be best to order. My favorite dip is Grizzly Extra Long so I would like to make some that is most similar to that -- natural flavor, not sweet.

So I tried this the first time: 45% pipe tobacco, 45% spiced rum, 7% salt, and 2% sodium carbonate. Percents are all by weight. I have a science background. I dissolved the salt and sodium carbonate in the rum (mostly dissolved) and added to the tobacco and mixed it in the food processor until it was about the right texture for me. Then packed it in a plastic container and put in the fridge. It is a little on the dry side and flaky, and tastes a lot like that time I ran out and opened a cigarette to dip. Not good, but kept me from going through withdraw symptoms.

I studied a little more and saw people writing about low temp cooking and adding glycerin so I made a second 100 gram batch yesterday with this recipe; 45% tobacco, 45% spiced rum, 6% salt, 2% sodium carbonate, 2% glycerin. This time I mixed dissolved (mostly) the salt in the rum, mixed in food processor, packed it tight in a jar, put the jar in a pan of water with lid on loose, and baked it in the oven at 195 F for 8 hours. I took it out and put it back in the food processor and added the sodium carbonate (mostly dissolved in a tsp of water) and added the glycerine and then ran the machine until I had a fairly fine consistency. It looked a little dry so I added another teaspoon or so of rum and another approximately 2 grams of glycerine and ran it a little more. Then I packed it in a container and put it in the fridge last night.

I tried it this morning because I already used up the first 100 gram batch I made earlier this week. It is definitely better, a little darker and pinches out better. Still tastes like pipe tobacco, but a little better or maybe I am just getting used to that flavor already. So that is where I am now. Here are my questions:

Q1. Will cooking it at 195 F for a longer period of time make it any better?
Q2. Why 195 F? Why not 212 F? (boiling water bath?)
Q3. Is there a good reason that I add the sodium carbonate and glycerine after cooking? What if I added everything together before cooking?
Q4. Should I be packing it down tight all the time or would it be better to leave it fluffy? (during cooking, during storage in fridge)?
Q5. If I ordered whole leaf tobacco by mail then what kind would suit my purposes best? (assume no previous knowledge on tobacco leaves)
Q6. Does anyone on here know how they actually make grizzly extra long dipping tobacco?

Looking forward to learning what you know on the subject.
 

Jitterbugdude

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I'll try to answer a few of your questions, hopefully others will chime in

Q1: I do not think cooking for longer will make any difference. I've cooked for 4 hours and for 8 hours. The only differences I've noticed are that the tobacco becomes darker the longer it is cooked and it has more of a stink to it the longer it is cooked. The stink smell goes away after setting out for a few days to a week.

Q2: Why 195F? I do not know but I cook at 185F because that is what snus is cooked at to kill off all microbes. It is these microbes that are responsible for the formation of Tobacco Specific NitroseAmines (TSNAs) which are considered carcinogenic.

Q3: The only reason I add glycerine after I cook is because I'm using it as an anti-mold ingredient and a flavor enhancer. I think maybe by cooking it at a high temp it might get destroyed.

Q4: Packing tight is a relative thing. Tight to me might be loose to you. I start with 3 cups of dry tobacco, add my salt and water and pack that into a 1/2 pint mason jar. It is pretty well packed at that point. In storage, the first few days when I am airing it out I store it loose and fluff it up with a fork once or twice a day.

Q5: Burley is what you want for making a chew/dip. Some manufacturers use a small amount of fire cured but I do not know who those are and it relates to your next question which I do not know the answer to.

Edit: BTW, if the "pipe" tobacco you are buying is from a RYO store ( comes in a plastic bag) it is most likely Flue-cured (aka Virginia) which would not make a good tasting chewing tobacco.
 

deluxestogie

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I spent some time yesterday searching for any clues about the ingredients in "Grizzly". (Nearly every article anywhere on their products appears to have been written by them, rather than an unbiased author.) They produce over a dozen different products, some with fire-cured, some with menthol, some with mint. But the primary tobacco recipe is a complete mystery.

I would guess all of their products are primarily burley, perhaps with some Maryland. At least some include Kentucky fire-cured. The exact flavorants are anybody's guess. Have a look at https://www.lorannoils.com/, for flavors.

Good luck.
Bob
 

nunapitchuk

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I'll try to answer a few of your questions, hopefully others will chime in
Thank you much Jitterbugdude. Yes, I am using pipe tobacco from a 1 pound bag. You are right, it does not make very good chew. Ha. I will try ordering the Burley leaves in the next couple of days. Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions.

So you think the high temps (around 190 F) will damage the glycerine? I just looked up the properties and don't see any indication that the properties change much at these temps and even at much higher temps it looks like the properties return to normal when cooled. Did you find some other info indicating the glycerine would be effected at 200 F range?

What about the base (sodium carbonate), no reason that cannot be added before the cooking, right? It was sodium bicarbonate before I cooked it at 200 F anyway. So I don't see any reason it would be a problem unless the higher temp of the mixture causes some kind of reaction between the sodium carbonate and other ingredients. Do you know?

So the purpose of the cooking is to kill microbes? I thought it was to darken and change the flavor. If the purpose is just to kill microbes then hotter would be better, right? A boiling water bath would be 212 F, just a little hotter. Maybe I will give it a try and see what happens.

Thanks again for your help and advice.
 
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nunapitchuk

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I spent some time yesterday searching for any clues about the ingredients in "Grizzly". (Nearly every article anywhere on their products appears to have been written by them, rather than an unbiased author.) They produce over a dozen different products, some with fire-cured, some with menthol, some with mint. But the primary tobacco recipe is a complete mystery.

I would guess all of their products are primarily burley, perhaps with some Maryland. At least some include Kentucky fire-cured. The exact flavorants are anybody's guess. Have a look at https://www.lorannoils.com/, for flavors.

Good luck.
Bob
Thanks Bob. I will have a look.
 

nunapitchuk

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Is Swedish snus the same as dip? I found this informative article about it that includes info about the use of glycerine.
 

Jitterbugdude

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Not sure about high temps altering the glycerine. Perhaps try it both ways (adding it before and after cooking) and let us know.
The heating I think, is just to pasteurize the tobacco. The Nordic snus makers say it is to kill the microbes responsible for the formation of TSNAs but I'm not so sure about that. They use (and almost all American commercial tobacco farmers) Low convertor (LC) tobacco so TSNAs should not be a problem. I'm also not sure why they cook for 8 hours. I would think that someone did a study and determined that it takes 8 hours at 85C to kill all microbes.... but then again maybe they just pulled that number out of thin air. The longer you cook the more the flavor changes so maybe that's the reason for the 8 hr cook time.

I don't add any carbonate to my dip. I use all tobacco leaf with no stems added. The stems are almost void of nicotine. Adding stems means reducing the nicotine content so by adding carbonate you alter the pH enough to increase absorption.
 

tullius

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Here's my two cents:
Q1. Will cooking it at 195 F for a longer period of time make it any better?
Q2. Why 195 F? Why not 212 F? (boiling water bath?)
Q3. Is there a good reason that I add the sodium carbonate and glycerine after cooking? What if I added everything together before cooking?
Q4. Should I be packing it down tight all the time or would it be better to leave it fluffy? (during cooking, during storage in fridge)?
Q5. If I ordered whole leaf tobacco by mail then what kind would suit my purposes best? (assume no previous knowledge on tobacco leaves)
Q6. Does anyone on here know how they actually make grizzly extra long dipping tobacco?

1. Yes and no. I find longer cook makes better flavor. Your problem is the pipe tobacco you have (likely virginia) does not make good dip. See below for good tobaccos.
2. Anything between 185 deg F and 212 deg F works. I use water bath method.
3. Easier to add after, and it worked well for me. Haven't tried other way around.
4. I pack tight during cooking and storage. Note: I store under vacuum seal at all times.
5. I use half Dark Air Cured and half Fire Cured from WLT: this makes a great dip that is very close to grizz.
6. Contact them and ask, you may be surprised. They'll at least give you the ingredients. americansnuffco.com, 1-866-843-0636
 

tullius

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This time I mixed dissolved (mostly) the salt in the rum, mixed in food processor, packed it tight in a jar, put the jar in a pan of water with lid on loose, and baked it in the oven at 195 F for 8 hours. I took it out and put it back in the food processor and added the sodium carbonate (mostly dissolved in a tsp of water)
Hey, when you make another batch, be sure the salt and sodium carb are fully dissolved (in solution). I have to heat the water to get the salt to dissolve, but the sodium carb goes into solution at room temp. This is important. Add salt to water, heat & stir, then add to rum, so you don't have to put straight rum over flame.

Never got over to Tok when I was in great white north, but I sure did like interior Alaska.
 

nunapitchuk

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Not sure about high temps altering the glycerine. Perhaps try it both ways (adding it before and after cooking) and let us know.

I tried another small batch, this time I used 45% pipe tobacco, 44% strong brewed dark roast coffee, 7% salt, 2% sodium carbonate, 2% glycerine. Put the tobacco in food processor and started chopping it up. Added salt, sodium carbonate, glycerine to the hot coffee in jar and shook until everything completely dissolved. When the tobacco was getting to about the right grain size in the processor I poured the solution in and let it continue until mixed very well. Packed it in a jar with loose lid. Put in water bath in large sauce pan with lid on stove. Brought to boil, put on lowest heat, and let it boil slowly for 5 hrs. Left over night to cool. Tried it.

Not that bad. Not great dip, but it is OK, much better than plain pipe tobacco. Better than my previous tries. Has kind of a roasted flavor, a little darker than before. Not real strong, but long lasting and works. I am going to use this recipe for the rest of my bag of pipe tobacco. I have ordered 5# of dark air cured from Whole Leaf. I don't know if it is Burly or not, but the description page said it was the best kind for chewing tobacco.

Do you have advice on what I should do with the leaves when I get them? Do they need to be cooked or are they ready to grind up and make dip from when I get them?

And thanks again for the help and advice from Jitterbugdude, Tullius, and Deluxestogie.
 
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