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Home Smoked Fish?

Posted by Vanessa45 
Home Smoked Fish?
July 26, 2017 12:50PM
Does anyone smoke their own fish?
I tried it on my Webber last year but wasnt very successful.

I love moist smoked fish, chicken and mushrooms, even better smoked salmon and it got me thinking, could I smoke my own on my balcony?

Would it annoy the neighbours ? Does it create much smoke?

I wish Id paid more attention to a neighbour who was a butcher growing up, he had a big walk in smoker, like a portaloo and used to crank it up in the weekends - I dont even remember what he used to smoke.

Also how do you cold smoke?

Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 26, 2017 10:35PM
I am sorry I don't have an answer to this question but a question myself.What is the difference between smoked fish and kippered fish? A while back I thought I'd try out a smoked fish pie recipe,but there was only kippered fish and the person selling the fish couldn't explain the difference so I left it.Could I have made the recipe using kippered fish or does smoked fish taste better?
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 27, 2017 01:30AM
Vanessa, I hot-smoke salmon often, and whole trevally when I can buy it. I previously used a simple smoking box heated over a small gas barbecue; now I use our Weber Q-2000 barbecue.

This is what I do:

1. Cure the fish. For a half side of skin-on salmon I make a paste of 2 tab flaky salt (Marlborough, Maldon or Murray River), 2 tab honey, 1 tab bourbon or vodka. Pin bone the salmon and spread the paste evenly over the flesh side. Store in the fridge in a lidded box, baste every day for 4 - 5 days. For a whole split trevally you will need more paste, and cure it for one day only. I sometimes add 1 tab ras al hanout or chopped dill to the paste.

2. A few hours before you smoke it, rinse the fish briefly under cold water, pat dry and leave uncovered in the fridge for 1 - 2 hours to form a pellicule. This helps to absorb the smoke.

3. In the Weber I place four small ramekins to support the corners of a rack. In the centre I place a small disposable aluminium pie dish to hold the smoking material. I use 1 tab wood chips, 1 tsp Jasmine tea, 1 tab rice, 1 tsp sugar - it doesn't really matter too much. Close the barbecue lid, turn on to high and leave until the materials start to smoke. This takes about 10 minutes.

4. Place the fish flesh side up on a rack and place in the barbecue. Close lid, leave on high for about 6 minutes (for salmon), (10 - 15 min for whole trevally), until the fish is lightly coloured and you can see small drops of white liquid coming to the surface. Close lid and turn off, leave for a further 10 minutes. Remove and leave to cool. Try not to open the lid any more than necessary as this will let the smoke out.

Cold-smoking is more complicated as you need to separate the smoke source from the fish and pipe the smoke in to cool it down. It takes much longer and is more a serious hobby than something you do for dinner...

Marylew, a kipper is a cured cold-smoked herring. "Kippering" means salting and cold-smoking. Herrings are very oily and I don't think they would be the best option for a fish pie. Smoked snapper, cod, gurnard or other white fish would be better.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/27/2017 01:32AM by TPANDAV.
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 27, 2017 03:24AM
I've got one of those portable stainless steel smokers that uses meths underneath it. It's big enough for me as I only smoke one or two fillets for myself and it only takes a matter of minutes. It doesn't get very smoky so doesn't bother the neighbours. I'm sure they don't even notice that I'm doing it.

It's a bit of a pain, though, as I have to find somewhere out of the wind otherwise the wind blows through the holes where the meths container sits and it blows out the flame.

I tried smoking a couple of boneless chicken thighs once, but it took too long and I had to keep refilling the teeny-tiny meths container. That was not a success!

Don't ask me what the difference is between kippering and smoking, or even hot or cold smoked. I only know that the way I do it, the fish is for eating immediately, not for preserving it.
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 27, 2017 03:33AM
Hi Vanessa, We often smoke fish too because of the extras my boys bring back from a days fishing. Kahawai seems to be easy to catch and as we are in Auckland Snapper is another one. However, you can smoke almost any fish thats lovely and fresh with good results. We have an inexpensive stainless steel smoker box which you can by from anywhere you get fishing gear like Rebel, Hunting and Fishing probably even Bunnings etc They are designed to use over a couple of shallow dishes containing meths which you light but we just put it directly over the BBQ grill. Add your sawdust and you are away. For ease of cleaning I always put the fish on some folded tin foil and then on the rack because it makes quite a mess. First clean and then butterfly out the fish so its flat and then sit on several layers of tin foil and sprinkle over a generous amount of salt and then spread over a handful of brown sugar. You can add herbs or spices at this stage or leave plain. Crank up the BBQ or light the meths burners, put the lid back on the smoker and wait for it to start smoking then put in your fish. Turn the BBQ flame to med/low and smoke for 15 minutes for Snapper and Kahawai, a side of salmon (leave the skin on the bottom) can take around 20 min for a whole side. Take out buy lifting out the foil and put the next one in. Eat warm - delicious! There is not much more smoke than a normal BBQ session and should not annoy the neighbours, the smoke dies down pretty quickly anyway.
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 27, 2017 03:42AM
[] Like this one
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 27, 2017 03:45AM
Same as mine Danube. Does the lid warp as you heat yours up? I have to put a brick on each end of the lid to keep it down!
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 27, 2017 08:16AM
Yes, it does a bitsmiling smiley

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 07/27/2017 08:16AM by Danube.
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 27, 2017 02:30PM
I smoke salmon regularly, using a deep roasting tin that I line with tinfoil. I sprinkle 4 teaspoons of tea leaves onto the foil and 1 teaspoon of sugar. Then I put a cake rack that I solely use for this onto the foil. The rack is elevated a bit. I mix brown sugar with a tablespoon of rum and spread that over the salmon and leave it for 20 minutes. I then place the salmon onto the rack, sprinkle salt over it (sometimes also grated rind of a lime, some grated ginger and thinly sliced red chili) and then cover the tin tightly with foil to seal. I place the tin over my wok burner on my gas cooker and give it 5 or six minutes on a reasonably high flame depending on the thickness of the salmon. I then turn the flame right down and give it another 12-15 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish. After that time I turn the gas off and leave the salmon, still covered, for at least 20 minutes or for much longer if I have the time. The salmon is invariably lovely and moist. I don't know if this can be classed as 'smoked' but it certainly tastes good. There are lots of recipes for this type of smoking of salmon on the net. It works for me and the smell of smoke is negligible.
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 30, 2017 11:14AM
Ohhhhh you guys are amazing - its so good to hear success stories and without expensive kit. I do however have a Webber Q so the instructions TPANDAV gave are amazing - I cant wait to give it ago.

Sounds like cold smoked is very complicated so I will stick to buying that at the supermarket.

Now to get fishing.

Has anyone tried smoked mussels done at home?

Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 30, 2017 12:15PM
I tried to hot-smoke raw mussels and it didn't work. The mussels didn't open, presumably because the heat was too low, then I tried boiling them but they still didn't open so I gave up. I think it might be better to cook them first, just until they open, then briefly smoke them for flavour.
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
July 31, 2017 03:26AM
Thanks, thats really good advice, saving me doing exactly the same thing!

I bought some the other day, they were delicious but were drowned in so much oil. I didnt think they needed any oil really.

Another one Im keen to try is smoked mushrooms. It seems a bit of a trend at restaurants at the moment with diners lifting the lid to reveal aromatic mushroom smoke.

Re: Home Smoked Fish?
December 04, 2017 08:59AM
TPANDAV, did you block the small openings at each end, or was sufficient smoke retained under the cover? Thanks, Janet
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
December 04, 2017 10:05AM
No, I haven't blocked any openings, it didn't occur to me. There seems to be plenty of smoke just closing the lid of the Weber.
Re: Home Smoked Fish?
December 04, 2017 10:34AM
Thanks, I'll give it a try. In our previous BBQ, I needed to block a vent, but it was higher than those on the weber. Janet
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