Whole Leaf Tobacco

Attempt at making sun-cured rajangan

Tutu

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The long answer or the short answer? There's easily a hundred languages around in the whole country. As a basic rule of thumb, each island has its own language. Or rather, each ethnicity has. But ethnicity is often restricted to sea made borders. Not always though. In East Java, where I'm at, a large part of the population historically comes from Madura, an island north of, and very close to Java. There's even a bridge between Surabaya and Madura, the Suramadu bridge. Whereas many people on Java speak Javanese, over here the majority of people speak Madurese. With all these languages around, at the time of independence from the Netherlands it was decided that Indonesia needed a national language so that each and every person would be able to communicate. What they basically did was to take the Bahasa Melayu, the native language of Leftynick so to say (Malaysian), and had scholars simplify it, change it slightly, incorporate a few words from Indonesian languages or the Dutch language, and there you have it, Bahasa Indonesia, the official national language. Most people do speak it. Only if you're in really small towns, there might be people who don't. I know of a few. I can't converse with them properly, because I don't speak either Madurese or Javanese. So apart from those people in real small towns, most people speak at least two languages. If you go to Bali, they'll speak Balinese, given that that person's family is originally from Bali, as well as Bahasa Indonesia. If you go to Flores, they'll speak a local language from Flores, as well as Bahasa Indonesia. So these local island languages are not dialects, but languages. They're as different as English is from Greek. Bahasa Indonesian and Bahasa Melayu are very similar though. Hope that about settles it.

I'll end this with a few photos of something that has to do with rajangan, as we're in the rajangan thread. I was smoking this on monday. It's mixed with clove, but the principal ingredient is sun cured rajangan. Maybe ChinaVoodoo can consider growing corn, if you don't already, and dry the skin of the cobs for smoking rajangan. That way there won't be anyone able to tell the difference between you and an Indonesian, hahaha.

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IMG_20171009_175642104.jpg

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deluxestogie

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But if Indonesians use all their corn husks to wrap kretek, what do they use to cook tamales?

Seriously, what is that tied with? The green thing?

Bob
 

OldDinosaurWesH

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Tutu:

The answer you gave is about what I expected. Lots of different people and lots of different languages. And cultures.

Those cone shaped smokes in the pictures are gaining popularity in America among the younger people. Or at least something that resembles that. You can buy the wrappers on line, although I forget what they are made of. I don't think corn husks. Corn husks are used in Mexican cooking for wrapping Tamales. Mmmm!

Good to hear from you, and have a good one!

Wes H.
 

deluxestogie

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The wife really wants corn next year, and Kasturi is a confirmed variety for next year so it will definitely happen.
Don't forget to husk the corn very carefully. My normal husking moves tend to tear the husks lengthwise, and ruin them for any practical use.

Bob
 

SmokesAhoy

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Cut at the base of the cob then they come off whole. I tried this a bit ago and that seemed to get the husk off intact the easiest
 

Charly

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I found enough time to join to the Rajangan trials :)

Well, since we have not enough sun here, I decided to try some rajangan/flue/oven test :D :D

First, I built a mini device to help me cut the leaves (one piece of wood already cut, one screw and one sharp blade) : 10 minutes to build :D

crop1.jpgcrop3.jpg

I took 3 different strains for my tests :
- Symbol 4 (yellow leaves that were pile curing for 9 days)
- Maesan Samporis (yellow leaves that were pile curing for 10 days ... too much since many leaves are trash, but I took the best looking leaves)
- Xanthy (yellow and yellow/green leaves, just harvested from the plants)

Maesan Samporis pile cured leaves show beautifull colors (the leaves are not dry at all) :
crop6.jpg

So I took all these varieties, cut them as thin as I can and put them in my oven, at 50°C (122°F)
crop2.jpgcrop4.jpg

At this temperature (I wanted to do something close to flue curing), the leaves were nearly completly dried in about one hour or two (for the biggest pieces)... that's some flash flue curing !
Then I put my oven on 70°C (158°F) for one more hour to kill the "Oxidase enzyme" (if I have read correctly the informations about flue curing) to keep as much sugars in the leaves.

Xanthy (green and yellow piles) BEFORE it's journey through the oven :
cro5.jpg

Xanthy (green and yellow piles) AFTER it's journey through the oven
crop7.jpg
You can see that the green color stays.

And now the three kind of colors I got from the different leaves :
crop8.jpg
(the symbol 4 ended just like the Maesan Samporis : with redish colors)

The small cutting device worked well for small rolls of tobacco... but I have to admit that it was not efficient when I used more leaves, so I finally removed the screw and used the sharp blade like a knife :D :D

I did not try to smoke the leaves yet, the smell is very rough and grassy, I will let it air some days before smoking them :)
Hope it will turn out good... (despite having flash flue cured it...)
Time will tell ;)
 

ChinaVoodoo

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I found enough time to join to the Rajangan trials :)

Well, since we have not enough sun here, I decided to try some rajangan/flue/oven test :D :D

First, I built a mini device to help me cut the leaves (one piece of wood already cut, one screw and one sharp blade) : 10 minutes to build :D

View attachment 22314View attachment 22316

I took 3 different strains for my tests :
- Symbol 4 (yellow leaves that were pile curing for 9 days)
- Maesan Samporis (yellow leaves that were pile curing for 10 days ... too much since many leaves are trash, but I took the best looking leaves)
- Xanthy (yellow and yellow/green leaves, just harvested from the plants)

Maesan Samporis pile cured leaves show beautifull colors (the leaves are not dry at all) :
View attachment 22319

So I took all these varieties, cut them as thin as I can and put them in my oven, at 50°C (122°F)
View attachment 22315View attachment 22317

At this temperature (I wanted to do something close to flue curing), the leaves were nearly completly dried in about one hour or two (for the biggest pieces)... that's some flash flue curing !
Then I put my oven on 70°C (158°F) for one more hour to kill the "Oxidase enzyme" (if I have read correctly the informations about flue curing) to keep as much sugars in the leaves.

Xanthy (green and yellow piles) BEFORE it's journey through the oven :
View attachment 22318

Xanthy (green and yellow piles) AFTER it's journey through the oven
View attachment 22320
You can see that the green color stays.

And now the three kind of colors I got from the different leaves :
View attachment 22321
(the symbol 4 ended just like the Maesan Samporis : with redish colors)

The small cutting device worked well for small rolls of tobacco... but I have to admit that it was not efficient when I used more leaves, so I finally removed the screw and used the sharp blade like a knife :D :D

I did not try to smoke the leaves yet, the smell is very rough and grassy, I will let it air some days before smoking them :)
Hope it will turn out good... (despite having flash flue cured it...)
Time will tell ;)
Interesting trials you have there. I'm curious about how it will turn out. I think using the oven is too fast though. You might as well try some in a mini greenhouse outside. You don't realize how hot it can get in a sealed container. I had the tobacco dry in three days during cloudy 12 degree weather.
 

Leftynick

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I found enough time to join to the Rajangan trials :)

Well, since we have not enough sun here, I decided to try some rajangan/flue/oven test :D :D

First, I built a mini device to help me cut the leaves (one piece of wood already cut, one screw and one sharp blade) : 10 minutes to build :D

View attachment 22314View attachment 22316

I took 3 different strains for my tests :
- Symbol 4 (yellow leaves that were pile curing for 9 days)
- Maesan Samporis (yellow leaves that were pile curing for 10 days ... too much since many leaves are trash, but I took the best looking leaves)
- Xanthy (yellow and yellow/green leaves, just harvested from the plants)

Maesan Samporis pile cured leaves show beautifull colors (the leaves are not dry at all) :
View attachment 22319

So I took all these varieties, cut them as thin as I can and put them in my oven, at 50°C (122°F)
View attachment 22315View attachment 22317

At this temperature (I wanted to do something close to flue curing), the leaves were nearly completly dried in about one hour or two (for the biggest pieces)... that's some flash flue curing !
Then I put my oven on 70°C (158°F) for one more hour to kill the "Oxidase enzyme" (if I have read correctly the informations about flue curing) to keep as much sugars in the leaves.

Xanthy (green and yellow piles) BEFORE it's journey through the oven :
View attachment 22318

Xanthy (green and yellow piles) AFTER it's journey through the oven
View attachment 22320
You can see that the green color stays.

And now the three kind of colors I got from the different leaves :
View attachment 22321
(the symbol 4 ended just like the Maesan Samporis : with redish colors)

The small cutting device worked well for small rolls of tobacco... but I have to admit that it was not efficient when I used more leaves, so I finally removed the screw and used the sharp blade like a knife :D :D

I did not try to smoke the leaves yet, the smell is very rough and grassy, I will let it air some days before smoking them :)
Hope it will turn out good... (despite having flash flue cured it...)
Time will tell ;)
I was thinking of something like this for flue cure variety. Basically color cure to yellow then rapid drying the leaves in oven. Keep us updated on the taste note. Might try it next season if it is worth it.

As for the drying green leaves, I wouldn't worry much. It look exactly like rajangan tobacco I smoke. Airing it a few days help to reduce harshness of raw tobacco. Make sure it does not too dry before smoking. Trust me it doesn't taste good. Keep it in low case during drying. If it still harsh, keep it air out few more days.
 

Charly

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After about 10 days of rest, I finally tried some of the rajangan that I prepared (see the previous posts, where I explain the rajangan/oven experimental method), results in short : that's pretty good for some young leaves !

I made this first experiment with Symbol 4, Xanthy and Maesan Samporis. I have put the Xanthy and the Maesan Samporis in jars, in low/medium case and left the Symbol 4 out, humidified a few times but left open to air.

I smoked these rajangan in my corncob pipes.
I first tried to smoke the Symbol 4, it was strong and harsh, not at all was I was waiting from a bright leaf ... then Gavroche told me that someone said on the forum that Symbol 4 was not a real bright leaf... so I searched, and I found that Pier (Alpine) said "air cured it tastes like a 60% bright 40% burley blend", I can easily understand !
It burned not easily, got out all the time, I even got an ashy taste, it reminded me some brown ropes from Gawith... but more raw.
Maybe it was strong and harsh because I did not let it rest in low/medium case in jars ? or maybe the strain is like this ? I did not compare to air cured Symbol 4, so I don't know yet. Time will tell.
I will put it in jars in medium case to see how it evolves.

Then I tried the Xanthy (the yellow leaves and the light yellow/green ones). This was another story ! On ignition it was quite strong but mellowed fast and offered a light smoke, lightly acidic, smooth and aromatic ! I would say floral and somewhat spicy, and some light incense ! Very good ! (the yellow leaves are better than the light green, but the light green was good none the less)
I will make more of it and let it mellow more :)

Last, I tried Maesan Samporis, it was a little bit stronger than Xanthy (less than Symbol 4). Darker flavors, woody/earthy, even a bit "animal" or smocky with a light sweetness, more round and heavy than Xanthy : enjoyable too !

Conclusion : this "rajangan/oven" experiment ended pretty well ! I am really happy.
If someone can try and compare this rajangan/oven method to regular rajangan (with sun) or flue curing it would be very interesting :)
I can't wait to see how these tobaccos will evolve if I let them some time to age properly !
 

Charly

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Thanks Bob for the link, I've just read it, it is just like the rajangan method indeed.
One good thing for cigarettes smokers : with this method you can make some really very fine shred, since it shrink while drying.
 

Jitterbugdude

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You definitely have to use a knife ( or something similar) with the "Coleslaw Curing" method. I used a regular cabbage shredder ( wooden, used for making kraut) and it bruised the yellow leaves, instantly turning them to brown.
 

Tutu

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The nice thing about Charly's rajangan for me is that he actually used Samporis for it, which is grown in Indonesia exclusively for the rajangan market. So there you have it, real rajangan from real rajangan tobacco. Thumbs up!
 

Charly

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Thank you Anton :)
I am not sure I have the "real" rajangan, since I dried it faster than it is meant to be ;) the tobacco did not see the sun during the curing process at all (pile curing and drying in the oven).
If I am lucky, it may be close to the original, but I am sure it will never be exactly the same as the one made in Indonesia (there are so many differences between our climates, weather, temperatures and curing !)

The Maesan Samporis rajangan is enjoyable, but I enjoyed the Xanthy rajangan even more (for now).

If we have a bit of sun next weeks, I might try to do some traditional rajangan (WITH sun), but if we don't, I will continue to try the "speed rajangan/oven" process again !
I still have some other strains that have some leaves wainting for harvesting ! I will see if I can get other interesting results :)

By the way, I had a question for you Anton ! I've read somewhere about the "Srinthil" tobacco in Indonesia (cultivated in Temanggung area, different cultivars : Gober Genjah Kemloko, Genjah Kenongo, Sitieng, Gober Dalem, Ontel...), used mixed in kretek cigarettes, is said to be an "aromatic tobacco", do you know something about it ?
They talk about it in this page : http://berkalahayati.org/files/journals/1/articles/851/submission/851-2416-1-SM.pdf
 

deluxestogie

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That is an excellent article, Charly. Thank you. The 6 page document is dated 2015, so this is current. The photos of Prancak N-1 assure me that my grow of that variety this past season was representative.

I'll note that the final section, entitled "Cigarette Tobacco" should actually be named "Cigar Tobacco." Thanks to Tutu, many of the varieties and locations discussed throughout the article are familiar.

I'll add the article link to my Indonesian Tobacco thread.

Bob
 

ChinaVoodoo

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Conclusion after kilning rajangan in a jar. It was easy. It is good.
I will ever and forevermore do this with the first pick of my flue cured tobaccos. I don't care. This is a solid addition to the variety of tobacco I have.
 

ChinaVoodoo

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Could you summarize this approach, start to finish?

Bob
I used a flue cured tobacco, Delhi 34. I picked leaves which were ripe, ranging from 20% to 100% yellow. I piled it in the garage for a couple days. I then sorted it, choosing leaves which were at least 80% yellow. I processed those, and left the rest to yellow for a subsequent batch.

I frogged the leaves, removing about half of the mid ribs, only. I rolled them up into a cylindrical shape about 4"in diameter. I used the thinnest kitchen knife I had and shredded it by hand with said knife. It was about the same as shredding cabbage.

I used a 1020 tray, the 1020 basket insert, and the 1020 clear dome. I put the shredded tobacco on a bud bag in the basket, in the tray. I put some water in the tray, but not so much that it would get the tobacco wet. I put the dome on, and closed it's vents about 80% of the way.

I left this tray of tobacco in the sun on my lawn with a 2x4 leaned against it so the dome wouldn't come off in the wind. Every morning I would come and stir the tobacco. After 3 days, it appeared fully cured. I removed the tobacco after 4 days.

A month later, I weighed the tobacco and added water to bring it up to an approximate 30% water content. For example, if the sample weighed 100g, assuming it was already 15% water because it was in case, I added another 15 grams of water.

I then packed it as tightly as I could into a mason jar and put it in my kiln for two weeks at 131F.
 
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