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First Bluefish of the Season

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Had a piece of good luck while fluke fishing this week. Got hit with a nice 3 lb bluefish. We promptly bleed it and got it cooled down. Fillets were left with the skin on. Final destination - the smoker!


Once home no time was wasted trimming the fillets and washing off the slime. They got patted down in preparation for the rub.




Used about 1/2 cup salt, 1/4 cup each of white and brown sugar with 15 peppercorns cracked coarsely.




Pretty things aren't they. Bleeding when first caught really makes a difference.




I like using bamboo skewers to build my rack. Easy to fit, non-reactive and keeps the fish out of the liquid.




All rubbed down and ready to sit overnight in the fridge.




Next morning a quick rinse, patted dry and allowed to dry for about 3 hours




Used a combo of apple wood chips and chunks at 150F for three hours. Added the fish right at the beginning so the temp would come up gradually and let the fish absorb the pre-smoke flavors of the wood. Three hours later we have something beautiful.


You may notice that while I started with two fillets, only one survived long enough for the final picture. Note to self - take the pics before the ravening hordes arrive.


Happy smokin folks!

post #2 of 9

I love bluefish!

post #3 of 9

That looks outstanding! I haven't ever had bluefish, but it's fish, so it's all good to me.

post #4 of 9

Nice job. I primarily fish for Bass and fluke, so the blues go back. But I'm a firm believer that bleeding them out makes all the difference, with any fish. I smoke all of my fish too and yours came out excellent. I like the skewer trick too.

post #5 of 9
Looks great
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hey Sam3 - I'd love to hear what you do in the smoker with bass and fluke. Haven't been happy with my attempts with lean fish.

post #7 of 9
Originally Posted by Backsmokin View Post

Hey Sam3 - I'd love to hear what you do in the smoker with bass and fluke. Haven't been happy with my attempts with lean fish.

Sure thing. I have the recipe written down at home. I'll post it up for you tomorrow.

I don't smoke fluke, it's too thin and is much better dipped in a beer batter and deep fried. biggrin.gif

post #8 of 9

Backsmokin, here you go. I brine mine.


1 gallon water
3 cups kosher salt
3 cups brown sugar
2/3 cup dark soy
1/4 cup minced garlic

Soak fillets for minimum 24hrs, I let mine go for 40hrs.

Rinse well and pat dry. Air dry and smoke like you normally would do.

post #9 of 9

Backsmokin, the fish looks good. I give you guys credit for eating them. I grew up in NJ and the Atlantic Highland was 30 minutes away with many Party Boats featuring 4 and 8 hour Bluefish trips every day of the week. I love to catch them but even having had them prepared a variety of ways just have not been able to get past the Strong Fatty Flavor. To me Salmon is tasteless compared to Bluefish. Enjoy the catch...JJ

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