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Screwed up walleye smoke

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Oh this turned out way way salty wow.
Tried a bayleaf brine for fish from "the smoked foods cookbook".
The recipe:
3 C cold water (ya not correct)
1 1/2 C pickling salt
3/4 C packed drown sugar
1 tbsp. Coarse ground black pepper
6 bay leaves
1 1/2 tsp. Whole allspice
1 1/2 tsp. Ground ginger
2 garlic cloves pressed

Ok so the flavor was what I was looking for but the salt was way to much. To fix do I just make it 1gal. Water

What is usually the salt to water ratio for fish brine (rule of thumb)
I'm thinking of adding a little more brown sugar also

post #2 of 8

That's a 2:1 ratio of salt over sugar which for quite a few members is pretty mild for a wet brine.  Many use a 4:1 ratio.   Are you hot or cold smoking your fish?   How long were you planning to brine it?  I would agree that just 3 cups seem a little low, but can't say if increasing it will help much.  Did the recipe tell you to rinse the fish well?   Maybe it needed a longer rinse or even a soak in fresh water.  Hmmm

post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
I was hot smoking it 180deg. It said brine over night than rinse off in cold water and let air dry for a few hours.

I doubled the recipe is that where I screwed up? I had lots of fish
post #4 of 8

Maybe brining it over night with that recipe was too long for your taste buds.  I really don't think doubling the brine recipe would change the saltiness flavor.


I'm a dry brine person using a 1/4  (salt/sugar) ratio with no other spices except for an occasional few slurps of whatever marinade I can find in the cupboard.

post #5 of 8
May I suggest a dry brine.... Equal parts of salt and brown sugar... add your favorite ground dry spices... filet the fish and then add 4% by weight of the mix.... let sit for 24 hours in the refer... longer if the fish are thicker than 1/2".... rinse and dry and cook per normal....
Using the mix above, the salt and sugar will be 2% by weight and you can't over brine... I do all my fish using a dry brine... they always come out very good... never salty....
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
I might try a dry brine next. Worst that can happen is I have to go fish more
post #7 of 8

That would have been fine at 2-4 hours but that is a pretty strong brine for overnight. The other thing is use Kosher Salt. The fine Pickling salt, by volume, is Double what many use. As Dave pointed out going by Weight gives better control, with any salt you have, and no over salting regarless of contact time...JJ

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Tried it again with an extra cup of water and 4hour soak.

Turned out way better. This time walleye and some northern (accidentally thawed wrong bag)

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