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LOCATION: Recipes >> Outdoor Cooking >> Smoked Fish 09

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I would try a Scotch smoke: light brine, dry, cold smoke, "polish",
sweat and refrigerate. Based on other white fleshed, low-medium
fat fish I would try:

Skin on boned fillets; score the skin.

Use only pure pickling salt as it has no impurities or additives
to toughen or discolor fish.

Use either a plain brine or a sugar-spice brine.

Plain brine: 4 1/2 c salt per gallon of water, cooled to 60 deg F.

Salt-sugar-spice brine: 4 1/2 c pickling salt and 1 1/2 c white or
brown sugar to 1 gallon qt water. Add 10 bay leaves, 1/2 tb mace,
2 tsp pepper and 1 tb juniper berries. Adjust amounts or add other
spices to taste. Simmer the spices in the brine 45 min. Strain
the brine through a cloth, discard spices and cool the brine to 60
F or less.

Brine 1 to 2 hours depending on size. When done the flesh will be
firm enough for slicing and feel like the lean part of a slab of
bacon when pressed between the thumb and forefinger.

After brining, place the fish pieces skin side down so they can
drain. Tilt the drain trays so that the brine runs off the fish
to prevent salt deposit build up on the fish.

Cure 12 hours at a temp below 65 F.

Spit them through the eyes with a stiff, heavy wire and hold the
belly open with match sticks.

Dry at 90 deg F for 1-2 hours [forced draft] or 12 hr or more
[natural draft].

Then smoke for 1 1/2 hrs [forced] or 3 hrs or more [natural]. Use
oak if possible.

These times are just a guide; each fish is different.

Polish: Give the fish a moderate burst of heat [100 deg f] for 15
min to bring the oil to the surface.

Weight Loss Guide: From salting and smoking/drying should run around

Sweating: For fish that are still not firm enough, sweat the smoked
fish by leaving in a cool place 24 hrs. Moisture will come to the
surface. Then continue drying in the smoker.

Refrigerate: Difficult fish improve by letting the fish condition
a few days in the refrigerator unwrapped before slicing.

Storage: Cool the fish before wrapping. Even at 85 the fish will
sweat if wrapped before cooling and spoil quickly. Use within a
week. Freeze any surplus as Scotch smoked fish is still perishable.


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