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Salmon brines, cures and smoking temps?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I've hot smoked salmon where i've brined it  and not brined but i want to cold smoke salmon this time. 


My understanding is do a dry cure if i'm going to cold smoke it so it pulls the moisture out and then it can be cold smoked below 80 degrees. 


If you want to "hot smoke" it, even if that means lower temps like 100 degrees it should be brined?



Am i way off on this please help, i have to salmon steaks in the freezer that i want to dethaw and do a true cold smoke with. 

post #2 of 8

I DO A DRY CURE . It always comes out good.

post #3 of 8


Post your cure please, i am also interested in cold smoking some salmon.

post #4 of 8

This site has a great search tool..


Here's all you want to know...




post #5 of 8

This is how I do it. Use salmon that has been frozen for a minimum of 7 days below 0°F. This will kill some parasites that could be in the fish. In a shallow, non-reactive pan layer about 1/4" of kosher salt, then place the now thawed salmon skin-side down on the salt. Roughly chop a handful of fresh dill and spread over the top of the salmon, use as much as you'd like. You could add other spices now, I don't. Finally pour more kosher salt on top of the dill and fillet until it's completely covered. Cover the container and refrigerate it for at least 12 hours, more won't hurt. when the time is up wash the fillet under cold, running water. some of the dill may remain, but all the salt will wash off. the fillet will become somewhat firm during the process. Now soak the fillet in fresh cold water for 2 or 3 hours changing the water a couple times to draw some of the salt back out. You can taste the salmon now to see if you like the salt level or need to soak it a bit longer if you're so inclined. Once its how you like it, place the fillet on a rack uncovered so air can circulate around it, and let it dry out in the fridge for another 12 hours or so (I have done less in a pinch). The color will darken a little, and take on a shiny look. The fillet will be dry to the touch, and it's ready to smoke (or eat immediately as gravlax).


I like the outside temp to be in the low 30°s when I make this. My smoke comes from and Amaze-N-Tube smoker and burns for about 6 hours adding little heat to the cabinet. once the smoke process is done I zip-lock the fish, and leave it mellow in the fridge for a week or so. It's then ready to eat, or vacuum pack and freeze for later use.


Obviously employ any additional food safety precautions you deem necessary.

post #6 of 8

So pre-frozen Salmon would be goodicon_question.gif Nothing fresh in Toledo.oihO.cool.gif

post #7 of 8

There is always sushi grade from Rohr... But yes, I've read a lot that states pre frozen is OK to use, especially for gravlax, or cold smoking. IME it works fine. Kroger had fresh Atlantic fillets at the beginning of Lent for $3.99/lbs, we have about 20lbs portioned, vacuum bagged, and in the freezer! I smoked 2 of the fillets then and everyone that tried it really liked it.


BTW, I'm in Findlay.

post #8 of 8

Hi there. 

 Here is what I do for cold salmon smoking: I use salt saturated water ( i think you call it brine) ad a lot of brun sugar, dark spicie run and juice of two citrus. I then drop 6 frozen salmon filets in it and let it rest, in the frig, for at least 24 hours. Be sure to put some weight on the filets so they stay complitely immerge. After 24 hours of curing, I rince the filets in cold water, dry them out whit a paper towel and back to the frig, not covored, for another 24 hours. so they will dry out.


 Now, it's time for cold smoking the beasts. The big problem here is to keep your smoker as cold as possible ( betwen 5 and 10 degree C). I do insert a, as big as possible, plate fill whit ice at the bottom of my  Bradley smoker and I use the cold smoking kit that I bought. I then smoke it for about 3 hours whit cherry and apple biscuits.


 All you have to do after that is refreeze the beast until ready to serve.

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