Hey everyone! I’m Jen from HookahHooligan.com and today I’m lucky enough to be a guest here on Hookah.org. I’m from Canada and tobacco products are pretty hard to come by, so as an alternative I smoke a lot of steam stones and herbal shisha instead. I’ve seen that some people have problems getting them to work properly for them and in turn, they give up on them and end up not liking them. So I decided that for my guest post here I’m going to explain exactly how to get good smoke (or vapor?) out of steam stones.
The first thing you need to have is a decent phunnel or vortex bowl. You can’t effectively use a mod bowl or traditional Egyptian bowl with steam stones because the juice will just drip down the stem and the stones won’t smoke well without the juice. It’s also helpful to add a few extra drops of juice on top of the stones after you pack them into the bowl.
Packing is simple, almost impossible to mess up, actually. Just give the jar a good shake and then using a spoon, put the stones into the bowl just like you would any other shisha. You don’t have to worry about the foil touching them so how many stones you add is really up to you, just make sure you don’t add too few, you’ll have to fill it up at least three quarters of the way. As for the hole pattern in the foil, it really doesn’t matter, just don’t poke too many because it causes more ash to get into the stones. Go for a nice evenly spaced circular pattern and you’ll be fine.
Now this is the important part, heat management is what will get you the best results from steam stones. I always suggest using natural coals like Coco Naras or Coco Mazayas, because quick lights just don’t work as well and they smell/taste awful too. But if you have no other choice, then take two circular quick lights and cut them in half using a knife. Use 3 of the halves instead of 2 whole ones, it will create too much heat if you use them whole. If you’re using naturals, then I suggest using 3 coals for optimum smoke and taste quality, but you can get away with 2 if you use a wind cover. No matter what kind of coals you use, you have to move them around a few times to keep the bowl heated evenly, also make sure that your coals are completely lit before putting them on the bowl. Some steam stones use vegetable glycerin instead of the regular stuff, these, at least in my experience, tend to be more heat sensitive and will burn your throat when over heated. Stick to 2 coals with these to avoid any trouble.
The great thing about steam stones is that after you’re done smoking you can re-use them. When you take the foil off they’ll be all dried up and will probably have some ash on them from the coals, no problem! Just give them a good rinse, leave them out over night to dry completely and then toss them back in the jar to re-coat them in juices. You can do this until the juice in the jar is all gone, and then it’s time to replace them.
So there you go, this is a fool proof way to get the best quality smoke out of steam stones. If you’re looking for some suggestions on what flavors or brands to buy then I invite you to come over to my site and check out some reviews. I’m always trying out new stuff and I review everything I try. Thanks for reading!