salmon university saltwater fishing education, john keizer, tom nelson, washington, british columbia, puget sound, pacific northwest salmon and halibut fishing

Home
Regions
Washington
Oregon
British Columbia
Alaska
Great Lakes

Updates

Chinook - Timing is Everything
Welcome to Pinkatropolis
Washington Coast Halibut
Shrimping 101
Boating Halibut
Heavy Metal Halibut
2009 Clam Season
Downrigger Tips
Six Tricks for Fall Coho
Buzz Bombing Techniques
New! How to fillet halibut
Rudnick's Halibut Fishing
How to rig cutplug herring
How to smoke salmon
Smoked salmon recipe #1
Ilwaco & the ocean
Barkley Sound, BC
Deep trolling for Chinook
How to brine herring
How to fillet salmon
Reel Maintenance

New Salmon Scenter™
Fishing reports
Win FREE tackle!!

Species Info
Salmon
Halibut
Ling Cod

Shrimp

Salmon Indentification
Clam Identification

Contact Us
Contact emails and info
Advertising rates and info

How to Smoke Salmon - Recipe #1
How to smoke salmon – recipe #1 intro
Preparing the fish
Preparing the dry brine
Brining the fish
Rinsing / drying the fish
Smoking the fish
Packaging the fish

Step 5 - Smoking the fish

The next step is to smoke the fish. There are lots of different smokers out there, and lots of them do a good job of smoking fish. I prefer the electric smokers because they are much more hassle-free than the charcoal or wood-fired smokers. With an electric smoker, some people even get as fancy as to run the smoker on a timer... so in case you didn't plan ahead, you don't have to wake up at 3am to shut the smoker off.

A couple of words about small, uninsulated smokers... first of all, they are weather-dependant. In other words, if you're smoking fish on a warm August day with no wind, it will take less time to finish than it will if you're smoking on a cold, windy October night. On a warm day it might take six hours to achieve your desired result, and on a cold night it might take ten or twelve hours.
You should also be aware that some electric smokers have bigger elements (higher wattages) than their smaller counterparts... and therefore the bigger ones have more consistent results.
When using an electric smoker, you should always try to avoid using an extension cord if at all possible. But, if you must use an extension cord, make sure it's a heavy duty grounded cord (14 gauge or bigger) and use the shortest one possible, to avoid any voltage drop.
As always, USE COMMON SENSE. Don't set up your smoker indoors. Don't set it up on your deck. Set it up on a firm, level, non-flammable surface, out of the wind, and clear of any houses, garages, wood piles or other flammable objects.


click to enlarge

Preheat your smoker for 15 minutes to get it up to temperature. Put your rack of fish into it, and add your wood chips to get it smoking. The amount of wood chips and what type you use are completely up to your tastes. For this recipe in a Big Chief Smoker, I use one pan of alder chips at the start, and one pan of apple chips after one hour... then I let the fish sit in there and dry out for another four hours or so, for a complete smoking/drying time of about six hours. Again, this is done to taste, and due to wind and temperature fluctuations, I check on the appearance of the fish after about five hours, and make a judgement from there.


click to enlarge

Here is what the fish looked like after six hours in the smoker... notice that the thin tail pieces are up top and the thicker shoulder fillets are at the bottom.

How to smoke salmon – recipe #1 intro
Preparing the fish
Preparing the dry brine
Brining the fish
Rinsing / drying the fish
Smoking the fish
Packaging the fish