collapse

Author Topic: The Perfect Smoked Salmon  (Read 47404 times)

Offline Wea300mag

  • Trade Count: (+3)
  • Old Salt
  • ******
  • Join Date: Aug 2007
  • Posts: 5431
  • Location: Sedro Woolley
The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« on: January 27, 2008, 06:33:22 PM »
The Perfect Smoked Salmon

Brine:
2 cups brown sugar
Ĺ cup salt
Ĺ cup soy sauce
3 cups water
2 tbsp garlic powder
2 tbsp onion powder
1 cup red wine (most say use white, I like red, it adds good color too)
2 tbsp tabasco sauce
2 tbsp Worchestershire sauce

Note: Most recipes call for way too much salt, the brown sugar makes the brine, not the salt.

Mix all ingredients together and let set for an hour to allow brine to saturate, stir thoroughly. Soak fish in brine for 12-20 hours depending on thinkness. (I donít rinse after brining like many instructions say.) Place on smoker racks with thickest pieces at the bottom and thickest side orientated to the sides. Sprinkle fresh gound pepper and brown sugar on each piece of fish. I use a simple Big Chief smoker and start with 3 pans of alder chips over the first 3 hours. After a total of 6-8 hours(depending on thickness) the fish is done. I use the original box as an insulation blanket around the smoker.  Here are the before and after pics. I smoked this batch today and am eating this piece right now (It's the BOM).
Keep your nose in the wind and your eyes on the skyline

Offline tmike

  • Non-Hunting Topics
  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Sourdough
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2007
  • Posts: 1322
  • Location: Black Diamond
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2008, 07:05:04 PM »
That looks really good! You forgot to mention the fresher the fish the better. I recently retired as a commercial fisherman of 27 years in AK and have probably  tried every brine/recipe out there. The only problem I see with yours is the timing. I'm impatient so I like a dry brine. Something you can do in a couple hours before smoking. I have a little chief and know the temp. it puts out. 2 or 3 pans of chips starting at 9 and it's done in the morning. I still have a big chief I've never used. Your timing may take longer, but I bet the taste is awesome. Some day I may have to see  ;) Have you ever use it to make a salmon dip? Mix it up with some cream cheese and a little liquid smoke, don't forget to add beer. To you not the dip!

Offline FISHBOY

  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Hunter
  • ***
  • Join Date: Aug 2007
  • Posts: 190
  • Location: Cheney
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2008, 07:09:01 PM »
What temp do you guys smoke your salmon at?  I have an electric Brinkman and it heats up to around 200-225 degrees, that seems a little to hot to smoke so I'm always cracking the cover open to cool it down.

Offline Wea300mag

  • Trade Count: (+3)
  • Old Salt
  • ******
  • Join Date: Aug 2007
  • Posts: 5431
  • Location: Sedro Woolley
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2008, 07:25:29 PM »
tmike,

Please post the procedure/ingredients for the dry brine. I've never tried the dry version and would like to try one that has been refined already. I, like you, have tried many different brines and finally tweaked one to fit how I like it. Yes, fresh fish is always best but when you run out of the smoked fish in the middle of the winter it works good on the frozen fillets too. I have made lots of salmon dip with the cream cheese (never used liquid smoke, until now :chuckle:) I usually save the dryer pieces for that. Finally, it is even better with a beer or mixed drink of your choice.

FISHBOY,

I have never measured the temp in the smoker, but using the original box as an insulator I would estimate the temp at 150-160ish. It's no where near 200-225.
Keep your nose in the wind and your eyes on the skyline

Offline tmike

  • Non-Hunting Topics
  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Sourdough
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2007
  • Posts: 1322
  • Location: Black Diamond
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2008, 08:02:50 PM »
As far as temps. go, I don't know! To be honest I've never checked it. All I know is that my little chief is cooler so I can leave it all night and not worry about it over cooking. Winter or summer makes a difference also. That's why I haven't tried the big chief because I haven't figured out the timing. I would rather use a colder smoke and check my fish more often until I figure it out. Fortunately I've had my little chief for about 20 years so the figuring is done. I also use it in the original box, but it has been rode hard and put away wet so I'm not sure how much more it can take. The pan on the bottom is rusted out so I have to use foil on it so the sugar doesn't drip into the chips.

I don't think I've refined anything. I always think there is a better way, except for the favorite beverage part before , during , and after. I have that part down.I think the key to a dry brine is also timing. Mortons sugar cure is good, it comes in a blue 1lb bag. Rub that on your fillets for no more than 1 1/2 hours, then rinse it well, let dry, put in smoker, sprinkle brown sugar, drink, smoke, eat. Very easy and good.

Lately I've mixed 2 parts brown sugar, to 1 part salt. Layered the fish and brine and refrigerate for 3-4 hours. It will turn to liquid. Rinse lightly, drink more, dry, smoke , eat.

Here's one that's not really a dry brine but can be done quickly.I learned from an old Italian to just use a 100% brine. Drop a potato in a pot of water, heat, and start adding salt. When the potato floats it's 100%. Lay your fish in a cooler and poor the cooled brine over the top. Leave for 15-30 minutes max. Lay the fillets on an angle and let them drain for a few hours. Drink, smoke, eat. Fresh is the key to this one and I guess I've been spoiled having access to great fish. For all I know the brines suck, but if you have fresh fish, which isn't always an option, and add beverages you can't go wrong. I like to keep it simple.

Now if you want to pickle some. I can hook you up with a killer recipe that's pretty easy too!  :brew:

Offline Bearhunter

  • Go in Lite come out Heavy!
  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Sourdough
  • *****
  • Join Date: Aug 2007
  • Posts: 1980
  • Location: Sedro-Woolley
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2008, 08:12:14 PM »
Looks great but the only problem I see is none of us get to tast it :)
Go in Lite come out Heavy!

Offline M_ray

  • Non-Hunting Topics
  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Frontiersman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Oct 2007
  • Posts: 4022
  • Location: I'm takin the 5th on this one
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2008, 08:12:38 PM »
tmike's pickled Salmon is to die for! I call it Gold "it's like Gold I tell ya!"  :drool:
DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed here are not those of HW Management, Admins, Mods or Myself... But they are the opinions of Elvis who has revealed them to me through the medium of my pet hamster, Lee Harvey Oswald...


MB

Growing old is mandatory ... Growing up is optional!

Offline tmike

  • Non-Hunting Topics
  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Sourdough
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2007
  • Posts: 1322
  • Location: Black Diamond
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2008, 08:18:54 PM »
The next get together Wea300mag brings the smoked, I'll bring the pickled. Who's going to get the fresh sockeye fillets?

Offline washingtonmuley

  • Trade Count: (+2)
  • Sourdough
  • *****
  • Join Date: Oct 2007
  • Posts: 1658
  • Location: in the woods or on the water.
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2008, 08:25:42 PM »
300,
I use a dry brine and I get many compliments after years of perfecting. I use a mixture of brown sugar 3 cups to 1 cup of salt,red pepper flakes,garlic salt or powder, and a little of an other seasoning you might like. I then lay the fillets in a glass container face up and rub the mixture into the fillets and then the nextlayer will be face down and then rotate each layer. I will let them brine over night in the fridge and then I will rinse the fillets thoroughly the next morning. Then I will lay them on the racks to dry for about three hours. Once they have dried I sprinkle brown sugar on the fillets and then put them on the smoker at about 160-180 for 6-8hrs depending on the size of fillet. I like lower heat for my fish.
Good luck

Offline tmike

  • Non-Hunting Topics
  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Sourdough
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2007
  • Posts: 1322
  • Location: Black Diamond
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2008, 08:52:38 PM »
From the pictures it looks like 300 has his down too. I'll try to refine my dry with your method. That doesn't sound like to much work. Thanks

Offline WDFW Hates ME!!!

  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Sourdough
  • *****
  • Join Date: Apr 2007
  • Posts: 1933
  • Location: SW Washington
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2008, 09:29:30 PM »
Try something new. When you take it out of the smoker take it out and rub some honey on it. Toss it in the oven for 15 minutes at 350... Try not to eat it all...
*censored* happens when you party naked!!!

IBEW Local 125

Offline washingtonmuley

  • Trade Count: (+2)
  • Sourdough
  • *****
  • Join Date: Oct 2007
  • Posts: 1658
  • Location: in the woods or on the water.
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #11 on: January 27, 2008, 10:19:38 PM »
TMIKE,
It is pretty easy and painless. The biggest mistake I see people do is too much salt. I usually go 3 to 1 brown sugar to salt and sometimes even 4 to 1. I do not like salty. Make sure you let the fish dry until it is nice and tacky.

Offline tmike

  • Non-Hunting Topics
  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Sourdough
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2007
  • Posts: 1322
  • Location: Black Diamond
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2008, 10:38:36 PM »
I think with all the dry brines controlling the amount of salt is the hardest. Timing is everything. I will increase the sugar to 3 to 1 and try it. Starting the smoke to early without drying the fish long enough is also very important like you said. Thanks for the advice. You also have to adjust for the type of fish you are using. I even tried smoking Halibut, but that didn't work out to well.

Offline Wea300mag

  • Trade Count: (+3)
  • Old Salt
  • ******
  • Join Date: Aug 2007
  • Posts: 5431
  • Location: Sedro Woolley
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2008, 05:56:19 PM »
I like my smoked salmon with a bunch of flavors (you can tell by the long list of stuff I add to the brine) so the dry brine with onion/garlic/red pepper/etc sounds real good.
Keep your nose in the wind and your eyes on the skyline

Offline robb92

  • Political Topics
  • Trade Count: (0)
  • Frontiersman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Aug 2007
  • Posts: 3683
  • Location: Spokane Wa, Andrews AFB, Maryland and King George, VA
Re: The Perfect Smoked Salmon
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2008, 11:37:02 PM »
Looks good!!! Will have to try them all!
"ITS NOT WHAT THE WISE MAN SAYS BUT WHAT THE WISE MAN DOES IN HIS LIFE THAT MATTERS"


 

* Recent Topics

Big news for west side and the NWTF by STIKNSTRINGBOW
[Today at 10:42:47 AM]


Multi season permits by WapitiTalk1
[Today at 10:31:31 AM]


Steel case ammo by Mongo Hunter
[Today at 10:25:33 AM]


Just how dark can coyotes get? by Machias
[Today at 10:25:17 AM]


the Methow is even worse off than I thought by Wunderlich33
[Today at 10:16:06 AM]


Kelly Hill by Machias
[Today at 10:15:33 AM]


WTS: 2012 Suzuki DRZ 400 by bucksbearsbeers
[Today at 10:11:31 AM]


Opportunity To Comment On The Skagit WA Use Plan by kodiak10
[Today at 10:06:02 AM]


BHA Pint Night Richland WA: Friday March 29th by Mr Mykiss
[Today at 10:01:34 AM]


Comfortable hiking pants? by D-Rock425
[Today at 09:52:57 AM]


Last Look Taxidermy Studio by LastLookTaxidermy
[Today at 09:50:27 AM]


Moses Lake ice off by RugerRay
[Today at 09:40:14 AM]


Yakima Camping Suggestions by ribka
[Today at 09:37:09 AM]


First time, any tips? by avidnwoutdoorsman
[Today at 09:36:20 AM]


Colville Turkey Advice? by Sneaky
[Today at 09:19:07 AM]


Walla Walla Area - public land by nwwanderer
[Today at 09:18:15 AM]


What happened to the Triploid trout stock by buckfvr
[Today at 08:53:09 AM]


3 1/2 ton floor jack by jackelope
[Today at 08:49:40 AM]


Permits quotas rocking by andrew_in_idaho
[Today at 08:11:15 AM]


Mixed bag by nwwanderer
[Today at 07:57:24 AM]