To me, cold-smoked salmon (that’s, the salmon you usually discover thinly sliced at your native market) is a comparatively current phenomenon. I grew up within the Pacific Northwest, and agency, meaty, hot-smoked salmon was the one sort of smoked fish I had ever skilled till transferring away about 20 years in the past. Sizzling-smoked salmon is often cooked by means of, and has a flaky texture in comparison with the tender cold-smoked salmon that most individuals know.
Historically, the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest would smoke their salmon for an prolonged interval, as much as two weeks. This staple meals would preserve indefinitely at room temperature, and had a texture like jerky. You possibly can nonetheless discover this salmon round, however because of refrigeration, many smokehouses within the PNW have adopted a scorching smoke technique to avoid wasting time and create a extra delicate (albeit perishable) product. My Dad usually makes smoked salmon in his little chimney smoker, modeled after this extra fashionable technique, and he additionally sends it to me most years as a Christmas present. At this time I’m sharing a recipe that’s just like his.
There are just a few tips related to my recipe. First, we’re going to coat the salmon in a dry, sweet-and-salty treatment, which is able to liquefy because the fish marinates for a few hours. We’ll then use the liquefied treatment to brush onto the salmon because it finishes smoking. This permits us to treatment and glaze the salmon with the identical concoction, minimizing waste. Moreover, we’ll dry out the salmon earlier than placing it within the smoker, which is able to kind a pellicle (protein coating) that permits extra smoke to stay to the fish, leading to higher taste.
One observe: lox and gravlax are sometimes confused with cold-smoked salmon, however they’re cured in salt, sugar, and dill, with no smoke added.
For this recipe, I used salmon from my buddies at ButcherBox. Their sockeye salmon (a current addition to their staple choices of top of the range beef, hen and pork) is wild-caught and sustainable–you possibly can learn extra about it right here. As a bonus, this week they’re providing a candy “Wings for Life” cope with any new signup (which suggests you’ll get 3 lbs of hen wings in each field free of charge, for the lifetime of your subscription). We took benefit of this provide just a few years in the past and each time the wings arrive in our field I really feel like I’m successful the lottery. Take a look at the promotion right here to enroll, however don’t delay, because the provide expires on 2/3/2020 (or whereas provides final).
Smoked Salmon (Gluten-free)
1/4 cup maple sugar
3 tbsp kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp paprika
2 lbs wild-caught salmon, skin-on most well-liked, lower into 2″ lengths
1. In a small bowl, mix the maple sugar, salt, pepper, garlic, and paprika. Pat the salmon items dry with paper towels, then place in a large baking dish; sprinkle the sugar combination all around the salmon — it’s okay to really feel such as you’re placing on means an excessive amount of, so much will fall off because it marinades. Cowl the baking dish and refrigerate for 2 hours.
2. Take away the salmon items from the baking dish and place on a wire rack; at this level, the treatment ought to have reworked right into a principally liquid answer. Pour the answer right into a small bowl. We’ll brush this answer onto the salmon close to the tip of the smoke. Place the salmon in a cool spot (below a fan most well-liked) for not less than half-hour, however as much as an hour when you put together your smoker in Step #3.
3. Put together your grill or smoker for oblique smoking (use the instance on this submit as a information), with a objective temperature of 180F (decrease that that’s good, however strive to not go above 200F). Smoke till the salmon reaches an inside temperature of 135F, which is able to take about 2 hours; about an hour into the smoking course of, generously brush the reserved marinade over the salmon. As soon as the salmon reaches 135F, place it instantly on cooling racks to chill to room temperature, about 45 minutes. Place in a resealable plastic bag (or use a vacuum sealer for even higher preservation), and serve chilly. Take pleasure in inside two weeks if inserting in a resealable bag, or as much as three months in the event you vacuum seal it.
** When you don’t have an opportunity to seize some maple sugar at your native well being meals retailer or on-line, you should use brown sugar as a substitute; remember to pour in about 1 tbsp of maple syrup into your reserved marinade earlier than brushing it on throughout Step #3, to impart some mapley goodness.