- 1,379 Posts. Joined 12/2010
- Location: Arlington, TX
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If it has been salt brined, it is OK. I have left fish out for hours to dry and form a pelicle with the aid of a fan. My buddy who used native recipes for fish, has left it out for days to dry. Salt is the chemical that inhibits bacterial growth.
Now the disclaimer, personally, I would never treat "pen raised" "farmed" fish the same as wild caught. I do not have any scientific reason for my thinking. Just figure the chance of disease in penned animals is much greater.
Take the fish out a couple hours before smoking and put it under a fan to form a pelicle. Be sure to add any additional seasonings to the fish before going under the fan. Remember fish is a mild tasting meat and too much in the way of spices can overpower it. When the fish gets dry to the touch and has a "sheen" to the meat, it is ready to put the smoke to it. If you do not have a recipe as yet, try smoking for 2-4 hours below 110 deg if you can. (this is where the AMNS would be handy) Then raise the temp to 160 for a few hours. I like my fish cooked to 135.
There are many variations on smoking fish from hard smoked to a kipper. All are good depending what you expect the finished product to be.