Author Topic: Cold Smoked Salmon  (Read 23950 times)

Offline Hunkydory

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Cold Smoked Salmon
« on: January 22, 2007, 06:11:16 AM »
Just about to start up my first cold smoke of salmon (using the box, tube method)

I'm a little concerned the brining method I got out of my "Preserved" book will do the job - it was an 80% brine for 2.5 hours, 3 hours was suggested for very fatty fish, 1 hour for lean, so I went for the higher end.  My fillets were no more than 1 inch thick, mostly less.

It's been drying for 24 hours outside in the smoker (the book suggested this was as good a place to do it as anywhere), in pretty cold weather, and is now nice and tacky.

I plan a cold smoke for 2 hours on Alder

Will the brining method I used be sufficient or will I poison the family ? ???

Thanks,

Hunkydory

Offline Wildcat

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2007, 06:16:59 AM »
Good luck on the smoke.  I hope it turns out perfect.  Take pictures. :)
Life is short. Smile while you still have teeth.



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Offline LilSmoker

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2007, 09:00:49 AM »
Hi there, whenever i do cold smoked salmon, i usually leave it in brine over night, obviously the thickness of the fish determins the ammount of time it spends in the brine. Personaly i would have let it brine for longer, usually if the fish has brined properly when you push it with your finger, it should push back, and feel quite firm.

I always do a simple brine of salt and sugar, warm water is best for dissolving the salt and sugar, just make sure it's properly cooled before using.
Measure out whatever ammount of water you'll need, keep adding salt until an egg will float in the water, then add the sugar, the amount of sugar will be to your taste, i usually do 50/50 salt and sugar ratio. Ok, let it cool properly in the fridge, and that's it, you can add flavouring to the brine if you wish, but i keep it basic, as i just want the taste of the fish.

I really don't know if your fish has been brined for long enough to be safe?, i'm sure somebody here will be able to tell you though, if you don't mind trying it you could cut a piece of of the fish in the deepest part of the fillet, and taste to see if the salt has penetrated enough?

Anyway hope this is of some help.

LilSmoker
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Offline Hunkydory

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2007, 09:22:54 AM »
Thanks LilSmoker - it seemed like quite a stiff brine to my untutored eye (600 grammes, so about 1.3 lb salt to 4 pints of water, it took ages to dissolve, and yes I cooled it down really well !), so I'm hoping I've scared off the nasties - but I'll try your taste and touch tests.

Whatever happens, it looed good when I switched over the shelves at half-time.........

If it comes out as sashimi, I'll know what to do next time  :)

Hunkydory

Offline LilSmoker

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2007, 10:04:42 AM »
Hi again, i think you'll be ok, to be honest i've eaten lots of raw fish over the years, real raw i mean no brine or anything, like in sushi bars, and once i was in Holland and had some raw herrings, anyway never had any issues that i'm aware of. I think it has a lot to do with how the fish has been treated hygene etc, but obviously safety must always come first. If you really do get any doubts with this batch, you could always put it back into the BS and hot smoke it. If you do here's a guide for the temps and times:

1 hr @ 100*
1 hr @125*
2 hrs @ 140*
½ hr @ 170*

Since joining here i have become a big fan of hot smoked salmon, but i still love the cold smoked, both methods are delicious imo.

Anyway good luck hope it turn out nice  ;)
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Offline Hunkydory

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2007, 10:55:48 AM »
It's in the fridge - still very pale but to be expected from the farmed organic stuff.

Great idea on the hot smoke, I'll give it a taste tomorrow (can I wait  :P) and make my mind up then.

It seems you are always there to help, LilSmoker !

Offline LilSmoker

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2007, 11:13:53 AM »
It's in the fridge - still very pale but to be expected from the farmed organic stuff.

Great idea on the hot smoke, I'll give it a taste tomorrow (can I wait  :P) and make my mind up then.

It seems you are always there to help, LilSmoker !

Yeah now it's in the fridge you can wait until tommorow no problem, yeah i like to help if i can, i have had so much help and advice from lots of the members here, so i like to do the same when i can. I think thats the thing that makes this forum so good  ;)
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Offline Wildcat

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2007, 11:18:48 AM »

I think thats the thing that makes this forum so good  ;)
[/quote]

Exactly! ;D
Life is short. Smile while you still have teeth.



CLICK HERE for Recipe Site:  http://www.susanminor.org/

Offline iceman

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #8 on: January 22, 2007, 11:34:22 AM »

I think thats the thing that makes this forum so good  ;)

Exactly! ;D
[/quote]
Yeppers. What LS said! :)

Offline Hunkydory

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #9 on: January 22, 2007, 01:10:18 PM »
I couldn't help myself - we tried a slice.

Stupendous !! - I still can't believe what you can do with this kit.

As for the forum - what's really great is that the people give you the confidence to try something you've always wanted to do....

Offline LilSmoker

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2007, 03:34:50 PM »
So it all turned out "Hunkydory" then  ;D

I'm pleased you got a nice result  ;)
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Offline tsquared

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2007, 08:27:43 PM »
Good job Hunkydory. How is the texture on the fish? I was trying to cut back on the salt on my last dry cured cold smoked batch and ended up with most of it being too mushy from not enough salt. I chopped it up into bits, mixed it with a few bread crumbs, chopped onion, and a egg and bread crumb coating and sauteed some smoked salmon cakes up with a bit of  garlic aoli. Twas a hit at a potluck dinner the other night.  Point I'm trying to make is even if you didn't brine it long enough, as long as you kept your fish refrigerated, or cold, then you don't have to worry.
Enjoy,
T2

Offline Hunkydory

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2007, 10:43:42 AM »
The piece we have eaten was fairly salty throughout - it was one of the thinner bits of the fillet, but at least it has given me confidence the brine has achieved something.

As for the texture, it seems quite firm, although it's proved to me that I should sharpen my knives !

Finally, the flavour was excellent, to my taste.  I'd love it if somebody else were to give it a go and see what they thought - on the other hand I'd hate to feel responsible for it if they didn't like it.....

Offline LilSmoker

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #13 on: January 24, 2007, 02:12:59 AM »
Hi again mate, well i know what you're saying about somebody else trying it out, it's almost like we're looking for approval just to let us know we're doing it right  ??? Anyway as long as it tastes right to you, i think you're on the right track. ;)

Atm with cold smoked salmon, i'm trying to perfect the "London cure" method, you've probably heard of this, but this method gives a mild but subtle flavour. I have tried to find the true way of doing this, but usually it turns out to be a "secret recipe" and the commercial smokers don't seem to want to share the recipe/procedure ? so if anybody knows how to do the true "London cure" please let me know ;)

As for knives, we were talking about them in another salmon thread yesterday, for cutting salmon slices consistantly thin you need something like this, they range from about £15 to over £100, i have one very similar to this:

http://www.formanandfield.com/salmon-knife-p-1791.html

One thing is for sure, we'll have a lot of fun in our quest for perfect cold smoked salmon, oh and ribs, and pork, and beef etc etc  ;D ;D ;D

LilSmoker
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Offline manxman

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Re: Cold Smoked Salmon
« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2007, 03:14:35 AM »
Hi LS,

Just tried to buy this knife and they wanted £14.95 for shipping, they are taking the mickey!!

Unfortunately because we are an island shipping rates can be very high if a courier is used and some companies don't appear use the Royal Mail or look for cheaper alternatives so it is back to the drawing board I am afraid.

Thanks for the link though, all things being equal I would have bought one.  :)

I am flying down to London this afternoon for a meeting tomorrow, should have time for a couple of hours shopping so perhaps I can pick something up there, however getting back on the plane tomorrow with a 12 inch salmon knife might not be the best idea in the world!!
« Last Edit: January 24, 2007, 03:27:32 AM by manxman »
Manxman