1st time smoking

Discussion in 'Fish' started by grizzman, Oct 18, 2014.

  1. grizzman

    grizzman Newbie

    OK this is my 1st attempt at smoking meat. I am trying fish (northern). My brine I used was 2qts h2o 1 cup salt and ¼ cup soy sauce and ¼ cup lemon juice and a few other ingredients. When I put fish in brine one pack was still partly frozen so I was going to leave on counter for about a couple hours so it could thaw more than place in refrigerator. Well I fell asleep and I forgot it on the counter over night and house is 63 degrees. My question is is it still safe to smoke and eat since there is salt and soy sauce and other acidic ingredients in there. Or is it a total loss.
  2. Food preservation is a complex science, and you don't want to shoot from the hip. For instance, given the relatively short time in the brine, the salt etc. probably wouldn't make much of a difference.

    The key question is the temperature of the fish when you discovered your error. The so-called danger zone is 44-140F. That's when bacteria and other pathogens are at their most active. The rule of thumb, for safety, is that the food can sit in the danger zone for up to four hours, and still be considered safe.

    So you're question actually is: were those conditions obtained. Given that the fish was still partially frozen when you started, I would guess that they weren't, and the fish is likely safe (I'm assuming you got it back in the fridge when you discovered it). But only your thermometer knows for sure!!!
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2014
  3. grizzman

    grizzman Newbie

    OK thank you. Yes I put it in refrigerator as soon as I caught my error and my thermometer only goes to 70 degrees and it was bottomed out so I guess I don't know the actual temp of the brine but it felt colder to the touch than what the air temp in house was
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2014

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