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Salmon Question

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I have done salmon twice using a couple of different rubs. My favorite of the two was just salt, dill, and lemon juice. Anyway my questions are:

What should the temp of the finished salmon be? I am assuming about 150-155 degrees.

What kind of guideline for time?

I know its all based on temp but the other times i did them i kept them on too long and all though the tasted good they were a bit dry. I want to know so I can time it better with my pork and chicken I plan on doing tomorow. Thanks for any help/suggestions
post #2 of 8
I have done a ton of Kokanee ( landlocked sockeye salmon ) and I do a brown sugar brine overnight ( 12 hours ) every so often when I think it should be about done. I open the Lil Chief and give a gentle tug on the thickest part of the fish. If I am able to pull a piece off, I then sample it. When its done it will pull apart quite easily, it will not pull apart easily if it is not done yet. As soon as its done I take it out and let it cool. Usually the first batch dissapears like magic Even up to and including the the third and fourth batch flys away if my father in law is nearby. I have no idea what temp the LiL Chief works at, I just trusted that it was correct as the instructions didn't bother to mention temp at all.

In my opinion the very best wood for salmon is alder. Back in the billowing white smoke days green alder was always the favourite wood for salmon. My recipe which has somehow gone astray was from the LiL Chief smoker instructions.

Aha! Found it on the LIL Chief website...

Yield 1 servings


2 Quarts Water
1 cup Non-Iodized Salt
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
¼ cup Lemon Juice
¼ tablespoon Garlic powder
¼ tablespoon Onion powder

Toss into a non metalic bucket and soak the fish for about 12 hours.
post #3 of 8
I set the smoker temp to about 200 for salmon. Don't want it to cook too fast. It's done when the meat becomes flakey.
post #4 of 8
145 f is the temp that is safe by USDA standards. Salmon is one of those fish that is often served from near raw in the middle to full cooked which is considered over done by many today. I would assume 150-155 would be adequate. I have gone to 160 for fish that was going to be used for fish spread

guideline for time will depend on the thickness. I've done salmon in an hour at 200. Some smokes have taken nearly two hours but I was smoking at a lower temp of 175
post #5 of 8
What do you guys usually put your Salmon on during the smoke... do you have to use that wooded plank?...
foil ok?
post #6 of 8
Foil is fine to put the salmon on. I just set the filets, steaks or whole right on the grates.

Don't fret the temps so much on salmon, just cook it till it feels right. It should flake easily with a fork. If you feel you have to dig into it with the fork, it's getting overcooked.

Check out ShooterRick's Copperhead Snakebite Rub on salmon. It's great.

post #7 of 8
I smoke my salmon with the skin on and have for over 20 years. The result is a much moister finished product that does not seem to lack any flavor as I have never had anyone complain or tell me that they did not like it and have been asked many times for "Grandpa's Brine recipe.

It also helps keep the meat from falling apart when you remove it as the skin helps hold things together.....a little Pam on the grates prior to smoking will also help keep the fish from sticking.

Inevitiably someonw will ask.... so here it is!

Grandpa's Brine Recipe

4 Quarts Water
1 Cup Canning (or rock) Salt
1 Cup Brown Sugar
3T Tabasco
3T Lemon Pepper
3T Dill Weed

Bring 1 quart water to boil, add salt and stir till disolved, then add other dry ingredients and simmer / stir till disolved.

Add remaining cold water and allow to cool (lately I have taken to adding ice instead of water which cools the brine even quicker).

Cut and place the fish in the brine and refrigerate overnight.

In the morning, pat fish dry and allow to dry until surface of fish becomes slightly opaque (a fan can help speed this process).

Place fish in the smoker (Pull fish 5 minutes early as it tends to continue to cook during cooling) and prepare to be wowed by friends and family!
post #8 of 8
i smoke mine with skin on as well, use a pretty basic brine(it posted here), basically kosher salt, brown sugar, garlic salt, soak for desired time, depending on how thick fillets or steaks are, a fresh water rinse. let the pellicle form and then rub a lil more brown sugar on the meat and to the smoker. i have never measured temp on fish, always go by a medium thick area, and when it JUST starts to flake you will be good. let fish cool off, you will notice that what seemed maybe not quite done will be done when cool as the fish does continue to cook after removing from heat for a bit. a little trial and error is required here, for how salty you prefer, how much brown sugar if any to add while smoking, and getting the feel of when it is done. remember its not what the recipie says, it is how you like it...
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