The idea of smoking any Fish makes most people nervous. It does take time to perfect, but the rewards are incredible. I began smoking my own Fish almost 15 years ago. I purchased a Charcoal grill and a Smoker came with it! I enjoyed it so much, I now give smoked Fish to friends as gifts. The process is simple, but does take some time. Follow these simple steps and you will be enjoying your own smoked Fish at home.
When you purchase smoked Fish from the store, you are at the mercy of the producer. The flavors added, the variety of Fish, the wood used to smoke with, is all up to someone else. The flavors in the Fish truly come from two things: 1) The Brine. A Brine is a step in Smoking that allows moisture to absorb into the Fish. You can add several different spices to tweak the final flavor of your Fish. The basic Brine listed below works for all Fish, please feel free to adjust on your own. 2) The wood chips – we’ll get to that..
- 2 Gallons – Water
- 2 1/2 Pounds – Salt
- 8 ounces – Brown Sugar
- 1/2 Cup – Honey
- 1 Bunch Parlsey
- 1) Bring everything, but the Parsley to a boil. Strain and add your Parsley. Allow 2 hours to cool in a cooler.
2) Once the Brine is cooled off, add your Fish. Submerge your Fish completely under the Brine and cover with plastic wrap to ensure the Fish is submerged.
Once you have your Fish in the Brine, place it in the cooler overnight. The Fish will absorb the moisture and the flavors you have put into your Brine. The next day, remove your Fish, blot it dry and put on a slotted resting rack. Place the slotted resting rack with your Fish where there is circulating air. Allow to rest for 3 hours to dry. It is now time to prepare your smoker. The following guidelines are for every time you Smoke foods. Please soak the Wood Chips in water for 1 hour. Prepare and start the Char coal, with no fuel. Once the Char coal is almost 1/2 White in color, add 4 Wood Chips. Allow 5 minutes to heat add the fish on the racks and Hot smoke the fish on the @ 215 degrees for about 2 hours.
In this recipe I have used Trout, only because you can go anywhere and get smoked Salmon. However this recipe works on any fatty Fish, such as Trout or Salmon!
A great Chef once told me about creativity – “Everybody thinks in the box. The great Chefs think outside the box – Think outside of the box!”
The idea of smoking your Fish, is not only fun, it gives you full bragging rights to fellow BBQ “experts” – ENJOY!