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To Brine....or not to brine...that is the question....

MWMW Posts: 61
edited 7:56AM in EggHead Forum
So, lots of good advice coming my way about smoking salmon....but I am still ponering about the brining. Good advice from Sprinter about layering sugar and salt on the salmon overnight, but so many recipes say soak it in brine. I dont want to ruin it but what do you all think??? [p]Hey love the egg.... but the forum makes it really special!!![p]MW
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Comments

  • Nature BoyNature Boy Posts: 8,339
    MW,
    I know it works cuz I have seen it mentioned. Haven't done it myself, but after seeing the advantages of brining on chicken and chops, I am ready to give it a try. Maybe someone will post a salmon brine in the recipe section![p]NB

    DizzyPigBBQ.com
    Twitter: @dizzypigbbq
    Facebook: Dizzy Pig Seasonings
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  • MWMW Posts: 61
    Nature Boy,
    Thanks for the input - yes, on researching the traditional way to make smoke salmon it always mentions brine... my concern is the constant warnings I read about overdoing it...oh well... in the egg...it will be great!
    MW

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  • J AppledogJ Appledog Posts: 1,046
    MW,
    A friend recently showed up at our house with a huge salmon - my husband's birthday gift. I had a brine mix that I'd always wanted to try so I mixed it up, tossed in the fish and some maple syrup (a la KennyG) and brined it overnight. I smoked it at 250? until it got up to temperature and it was wonderful! JCA

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  • sprintersprinter Posts: 1,188
    MW,[p]My typical way of doing smoked salmon prior to finding smoked salmon nirvana last weekend was to brine the fillet/whole fish in a salt water (ice water bath) solution, mix in any spices you want. I usually used about a half a cup of salt to a gallon of water. Then, I would smoke it low and slow, usually 3-5, maybe 6 hours depending on how big a fillet or how much I'm smoking. While it smoked I would baste it with a mixture of Orange Juice and Brown Sugar. This added a nice crust to the meat. I did this method a lot until I did the one last weekend, now my method has changed. Just another idea but the saltwater bath will not hurt it at all. The salt simply takes the blood out of the meat and toughens it up a bit. Email or post here if I can help any more, I love this topic and would be happy to help out any way I can.[p]Troy
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  • Nature BoyNature Boy Posts: 8,339
    sprinter,
    Maybe you should change your name to "Gills"!
    I am learning a lot from your adventures.
    NB

    DizzyPigBBQ.com
    Twitter: @dizzypigbbq
    Facebook: Dizzy Pig Seasonings
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  • sprintersprinter Posts: 1,188
    Nature Boy,[p]Ahhhhh, the teacher becomes the student. Glad to be able to provide some helpful ideas to you. Glad to be able to give back to those who have provided so much to me. I truly appreciate the kind words.[p]Troy - aka "swimmer"
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  • MWMW Posts: 61
    sprinter, this looks great. I have the salmon, cut in 4 inch sections with the skin on and will now salt and sugar it down....think it should sit overnight in the fridge.[p]Do you rinse any of the salt off before you smoke it??[p]Thanks for the recipe...[p]MW[p][p]
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  • sprintersprinter Posts: 1,188
    MW,[p]Excellent point MW. Yep, rinse it all off before you cook it. Rinse it well. What's the reason for cutting the fillets into 4 inch slabs? I leave mine whole, whether it be a small or a large fillet. Just curious. This is not my recipe, it was given to me by someone else, "alt" here on the forum a week or so ago. Thanks go there. I'm just the messenger. Hope you like it as much as I do.[p]Troy
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  • MWMW Posts: 61
    sprinter, cut into 4" slabs to prevent the fighting afterwards!! HA HA.....
    I am taking it on a canoe trip and thought it would just be easier to manage...
    OK... will let you know..
    MW[p]

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  • Dr. ChickenDr. Chicken Posts: 620
    MW,
    I haven't looked at all the posts you received in response to your questions, yet! I have brined salmon overnight and up to 4 days using a recipe I developed. The results are fantastic! If you are still looking, e-mail me and I'll send it to you. It works on salmon, steelhead, lake trout and browns. It's easy and does not over power the flavor of the fish.[p]Dr. Chicken

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  • SpinSpin Posts: 1,375
    MW,[p]Some excellent recipes and techniques have been offered and my comments are meant in no way to discredit them.[p]My suggestion is that you consider cooking the salmon using a simpler recipe that you are comfortable with preparing and then let your Egg do its magic. After getting a taste of what you know you can recreate, then explore more flavors and techniques.[p]Best of luck with the cook,[p]Spin
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  • Dr. ChickenDr. Chicken Posts: 620
    Spin,
    I agree with you 1000%. It will give them confidence and something to compare to when they go more "exotic"! Like the old addage says, "better safe than sorry!"[p]Dr. Chicken

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  • SpinSpin Posts: 1,375
    Dr. Chicken,[p]Thank you. The worst situation is when the intricate preparation cook is truely great and you only want to change it slightly to make it excellent for your tastebuds. What do you change and when and how? You have no resort but to go back to more simpler cooks to learn what you need to know.[p]Cook the meat. Then learn to make it as you prefer it.[p]Spin

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  • Dr. ChickenDr. Chicken Posts: 620
    Spin,
    Again, I agree 1000%. If they don't do nothing else, keep notes! Every new Egger I try to help, that is the first rule I give 'em! The better notes they keep, the quicker everything comes together. I still do it on everything. That way, if I need to make subtle changes, I can without "re-inventing" the wheel![p]Dr. Chicken

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