Getting ready to try my luck at smoked salmon

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by lovethemeats, Jun 1, 2016.

  1. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Just curious people. Out of all of the salts that can be used. What is most people's favorite to use.
     
  2. cmayna

    cmayna Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I do a dry brine of a 4/1 ratio of dk brown sugar / non iodized salt.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2016
  3. siege

    siege Smoke Blower

    I like 3 parts light brown sugar, 1 part maple sugar, 1 part kosher salt (by weight). After the pelicle forms, I add a light dusting of coarse black pepper, and smoke over alder. I use my MES 30 for meats and poultry, but a cheap Big Chief that came from a yard sale for $20 for fish.
     
  4. delbbq

    delbbq Fire Starter

       There are a few types of salmon..!! What do you have IE..Atlantic..King..Silver..??
     
  5. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I won't know type till I get to the fish market in the early morning. Have to get there EARLY or they will be all gone. They get all kinds except the coho comes in the fall time. Probably because of time salmon runs in MI. Most is farm raised but to get wild caught thats why I have to get there early. More then most it will be king. I used to do alot of fly in fishing so I know fresh from old. No stinky ones. If you can smell a strong fishy smell. Its not fresh. I've walked out many times refusing to buy fish.
     
  6. I swear by Alton Brown's smoked salmon recipe.  My family loves it.  Check it out on the food network website.
     
  7. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I watched it years back. Laughed my butt off when he did it in the cardboard box. Then I caught his episode of smoking beacon in the lockers. Priceless. Yes I thought about doing his version. Did you weight it down like he did when in the fridge?
     
  8. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Ok I went and got some nice Atlantic salmon early this morning from the fish market. Nice looking fillet just over 2.7 lbs. Question - thinking about using maple and apple for the smoke. Any suggestions for other combos. Right now it's getting ready to go into the brine. Great responses from that question. Thanks people for taking the time to respond
     
  9. cmayna

    cmayna Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    If you have Alder, I would go for it starting out 2+ hours and then go to apple for the remaining smoke session.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2016
  10. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Sounds good. Never done it with fish so I know best to ask the people who have. Thanks. I will be doing them in my older Bradley unit that I did a mod to. Will be using my AMNPS at the bottom for the smoke source. Once I get going I will provide pics. I find different times for brine times. 6-8 to 12-24. What I found was one article talking about the feel of the meat tightening up some and being less lets say mushy. Firm but you don't want it too firm as it will become tuff. Have you heard anything like this? So far I thinking of just the 12 then pulling from the brine and letting sit and do its thing in the fridge on the drying racks.
     
  11. cmayna

    cmayna Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I dry brine Salmon filet's 6-7 hours max.  Smaller pieces = less time.
     
  12. Yes.  I used a large book on top of a cutting board.  I followed his recipe all the way.  It was a little tough keeping the temperature down in my WSM but other than that it was excellent.
     
  13. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Good. Now it gives me something to try out on my next one. Read so much on this subject. Looks like I will be doing fish more. Something I've never done and need to perfect my skills on this type of meat. Glad I'm here. Now thinking about getting a cheap smoker just for doing fish. I know if I do too much in my Bradley. I'll never get the fish smell out.
     
  14. In my family's opinion my salmon is their favorite of all the foods I have smoked thus far (although my one son says my brisket and ribs tie for next place).  We all like everything I have smoked but since we all like the salmon best I have also thought about getting an electric smoker for fish and, if it will do it, jerky.
     
  15. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Well let me say. I was worried there a couple times while it was smoking. The temps got away from me about 3 times. Need to use my Bradley more. I did a simple wet brine for the fish. Salt/equal parts white,dark brown sugar I learned something from that to. Next time I will pull the thinner pcs out sooner. I soaked it for 14 hrs. The pinnacle formed nicely on the fish. I started out at 100 for 2 hrs. Then went to 140 for about 2 hrs. Then went to 175 for the last 2 hrs. My temps got out of had when trying to keep it at the 140 temps and again at 175. Learned a lesson on that one. Definitely not like using my MES. At the end I got the fish up to 165 then pulled it. During the smoking process I was brushing it with dark amber maple syrup every hour. I thought at the end it was going to be dry because of the temps getting out of hand. Wow to my surprise they were moist still. Now the smaller pcs were dry. Next time I will pull them sooner. But the bigger pcs were great. Nice and moist. Take a look at my pics. I was happy with it but know where I need improvements.
    Before smoking.
    After
    Look at the moisture
    It was a good dinner.
    I couldn't get the alder so I went with maple/apple blend wood chunks. I was going to use my A-maze-n but decided last minute to go with chunk instead. For my first time. I view it as a success and a learning experience. I will definitely be interested in doing this again.
     
  16. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Thank you all. I always appreciate the input from everyone.
     
  17. Looks really good!

    If I may I might politely add that you may be over complicating things a bit.  Look at the Alton Brown recipe.  He has you shoot for a single cooking temperature range (150* to 160*) and the salmon is done when it reaches 150*F at the thickest part of the fish.  His dry brine mixture is simple but if you use it I would cut back on the salt unless you really like things salty.  That was a common complaint.

    Of course there's more than 1 way to smoke a salmon so take what I say with a block of salt.

    BTW, good job!
     
  18. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Thanks. The main issue is the salt content. True. I have to watch out for this as my girlfriend can't have too much of it. You know. Doctors. Dry brine or wet brine is the question. Washing off the meat after doing either brine only removes the salt on the out side. To remove more of it you have a couple options. Soak it again in cold water or soak it in milk. Both will degrade the meat "make mushy". I came across this study done at The University of Alaska Fairbanks. Smoking fish at home. Its a good read. Interesting article.
    Block of salt -dash of salt.
    LOL. I'm new to smoking fish. Anything said I take note. I'm here to listen. After this first one I made. The main thing I went in search for was cutting down on the salt content. The only other things articles say are to use condiments to cover up the salt if its too much.
    Pbbbbbt. So again I do research in this site. Theres lots of posts on fish. When I get stuck. I raise my hand and ask the teachers. Politely. As I tell new people that start at my job. THERE IS NO DUMB QUESTIONS. Just a question needing to be answered.
     
  19. lovethemeats

    lovethemeats Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Oh. I wasn't making fun of Alton Brown's smoke fish episode. I found it interesting when i first watched it. I added it to my lists of choices at my disposal. I liked that someone tried it and wrote to me about it to let me know what they thought of it.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2016
  20. I didn't take it that you were making fun of him.  His recipe is a starting point.  We all start with something and modify it to our liking.

    I know what you mean about salt content.  We had a discussion on the rubs forum and the biggest concern seemed to be the high salt content of commercial rubs.  I like to cut the salt in a rub recipe in half.
     

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