Is smoking salmon difficult? It certainly is not! Besides the fact that we love a good piece of meat, we are also big fans of fish. Although the (cold) smoked salmon is well known by everyone, the warm smoked salmon is definitely recommended for serving your guests.
In addition to the fact that a hot smoked salmon is delicious, it is also spectacular to prepare and serve a complete salmon fillet on your smoker or barbecue. With the recipe below you can be sure that you will surprise your guests.
If you are planning on hot smoked salmon, there are a number of points to take into account. First of all, it is important to get a nice salmon fillet. Therefor you better go to the catering wholesaler or the qualified fish specialist who can help you with this. It is important that the skin is still attached, preferably already descaled.
Brining the salmon
Before the salmon is ready to be smoked, it must first be brined. We brine the salmon to lower the moisture content of the salmon and to improve the structure and taste of it. If you are going to smoke salmon, brining is really necessary.
Brining can be done in two ways, dry brining and wet brining. In this recipe we have dry brined the salmon. The word says it all, we do not add any liquid ingredients. We are going to treat the salmon with salt (brine) and in case of dry brining, we cover the salmon with the brine.
In the instructions below we explain more detailed the process of brining and smoking.
Hot smoked salmon from the grill
- 1.2 kg salmon fillet
- 1 kg sea salt coarse
- 350 gr brown sugar
- Check the salmon filles for any remaining bones. You can do this by rubbing the flesh side with your hand. This way you can feel if there are still bones left.
- Pat the salmon dry with a paper towel.
- Place the salt and brown sugar together in a bowl and mix well.
- Place a sheet of baking paper on a baking tray and cover it with the brine.
- Place the salmon loin skin-side down on the brine and cover the salmon with the remaining brine. Leave the salmon in the brine for at least 1 hour.
- After this hour, rinse the salmon and pat it dry with kitchen paper.
- Let the salmon loin dry uncovered in the refrigerator for 2 hours.
- Prepare the barbecue for indirect grilling and make sure you use a temperature of no more than 100 ℃. Meanwhile, place a handful of wood chips in a bowl of water for half an hour. Then drain them.
- Add the wood chips and smoke the salmon loin for at least half an hour.
- Place the salmon loin with the skin side on a piece of aluminium foil and place it on the grill of the barbecue.
- At a core temperature of about 50 ℃, the salmon loin is wonderfully juicy. If you still want to cook it a bit further, make sure you maintain a temperature below 65 ℃. Otherwise, there is a high chance that the salmon will turn out dry.