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Smoking a large fish

Discussion in 'Fish' started by barrycuda, Feb 15, 2011.

  1. barrycuda

    barrycuda Fire Starter

    I would like to smoke a whole striped bass approx 10-15#. Any suggestions would be appreciated. I was thinking of scoring the skin and laying bacon on the top. Don't know about temperature. Thanks.

  2. rbranstner

    rbranstner Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Is it already gutted and ready to roll? Does it still have the skin/scales on it or are you talking about a fillet? If its is a whole fish with stink still on I don't see the need for bacon on the outside since you probably won't be eating the skin/scales.
  3. barrycuda

    barrycuda Fire Starter

    I will scale, gut and remove the head so it will fit in my smoker. Don't have fish yet. When I bake this size fish I score the skin and lay bacon and lemon slices on top. I guess my question is what temperature do you smoke fish and what temperature do you want the meat? Thanks, Barry
  4. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    A good rule of thumb would be 145 internal temp.  Temps and times  play a role which could change "rules of thumb".  For smoking, I really don't think you need the bacon. I love the taste of bacon, but I love the taste of fish, too. Personal choice.

    Good luck and good smoking.
  5. SmokinAl

    SmokinAl SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I've never checked the internal temp of fish I smoke, just pull at it a little with a fork & when it flakes off it's done. I smoke mine at 225. I also like to skin mine & coat with EVOO & cajun spices.
  6. rbranstner

    rbranstner Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I smoke my salmon at around 150-175 degrees until it reaches an internal temp of around 140-145. The salmon is thick enough and doesn't have any bones so it is easy to stick a digital thermometer in the fillet to get a reading. If you are smoking a whole fish it might be hard to get an accurate reading with all of the bones and what not. I have never done it so I don't know first hand but you will want to make sure it is probed where you can get a reading or go by what Al does. I buy salmon at sams club and it doesn't have skin or anything it just the fillet with all the pin bones removed. Spendy but really really good.
  7. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    I sure hope you don't dry out the outside of the fish while the interior is still cold.  Whole fish is just not something I do low and slow.  If you filleted it no problems.  If you cook at the higher temps then you shouldn't have a problem.  I'm thinking 275 or 300 min.  But like I said when we smoke redfish it is filleted with the scales on, scale side down on the grill, patted with butter, garlic and lemon juice. 

    Fish will spoil quick so do you think a 15 lb fish will smoke in 4 hours?  SmokinAl has done it but I just don't believe they catch 15lb fish in Florida, at least that's what I have heard [​IMG]

    If you do it post some Qview.  If it works I'll have to try it but like I said I think it is to big for low and slow.  You may consider cutting it in 1 - 2 inch thick slabs, laying them on some aluminum foil on the smoker grill.  It should cook all the way through, you'll have nice color on both sides and your seasonings will penetrate better.

    Just my thoughts