Saturday, December 13, 2008

Smoked Salmon

Today was my first attempt at smoked salmon. Of all days I decided to use a different charcoal which was very slow starting. Because of this, I actually put too much in and the smoker ended up trying to stay around 275 degrees. My target was 225-250 so the salmon cooked a little quicker then I wanted but still came out outstanding. It was very very flavorful and I will make sure I use my old faithful charcoal next time.

I picked up 3.5 lbs of fresh salmon from Wholefoods.

1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 cup non-iodized table salt
3 tablespoons granulated garlic
3 tablespoons granulated onion
1 tablespoon dried dill weed
1 tablespoon dried savory
2 teaspoons dried tarragon

Place the salmon flesh-side up on a non-reactive platter or in a glass baking dish. Pour all of the rub over the salmon and spread it evenly over the surface, about 1/4" thick. Move the salmon into the refrigerator for 2-3 hours. This fillet was refrigerated for three hours.

Next, rinse the fillet thoroughly under cold running water to remove all the salt and sugar. Pat all surfaces dry with paper towels. You'll notice that the fillet now has a more intense color.

Place the fillet flesh-side up on a clean platter or sheet pan and let it dry until tacky, about 30 minutes. This tackiness is known as "pellicle". It is the result of water-soluble proteins drawn to the surface of the fish by the rub that dry to create a sticky layer. This layer prevents moisture loss and attracts and holds smoke particles during cooking.

You can dry the fish in the refrigerator, or on the kitchen counter in front of an electric fan

1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon granulated garlic
1 tablespoon granulated onion
1 teaspoon dried savory
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
Mix all ingredients thoroughly.

Fold a piece of heavy duty aluminum foil in half to make a sling slightly larger than the salmon fillet. Spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray and place the salmon flesh-side up on the foil.

Sprinkle on the finishing rub on all surfaces except the skin side. This rub is sweet, so adjust the amount used according to your taste. The Cardogs suggest applying twice the amount you would if you were applying heavy salt and pepper to meat.

The final product.

1 comment:

Marie and Charlie said...

Outrageous Harris...I can't wait to try this one. Now I just have to convince Charlie that we need a smoker :)