Hot Smoked Salmon

I’m a big fan of smoked salmon. Delicious with a fresh bagel, some cream cheese and a squeeze of lemon. Unfortunately, I live in a flat with no access to the sort of equipment required to cold smoke salmon. I do, however, have an oven, an oven tin with a grill rack and copious amounts of foil so I decided to make hot smoked salmon instead!
I was having a couple of friends over for some pre-Christmas food and drink. I thought I’d try something new and I’m glad I did! I couldn’t find a recipe which suited my needs properly so I cobbled together a few different ones.I found this recipe at honest-food.net which I used for the cure for the salmon.
Lucy had picked me up a side of salmon which weighed in at around 700g so I improvised a little with the measurements. I used about 1/4 cup of kosher salt and the same of brown sugar into around 1.5 litres of cool water. I put the salmon into this and left it in the fridge overnight (about 8 hours). In the morning, I washed the cure off the salmon and patted it dry, then I left it uncovered on the kitchen side on a rack for about 3 hours to help form the pellicle. This part is important as the smoke sticks to the pellicle increasing the flavour.
salmon fillet
salmon fillet
As the salmon was on the kitchen side, I prepared the oven tin by wrapping it in foil (this is mostly to protect the tin), coated the bottom in a layer of applewood chips and then put the grill rack in. I put water in the bottom of the tin to stop the wood burning too quickly.  This is something I found was a good idea from a recipe for smoking wings at home.
salmon fillet on smoking pan
salmon fillet on smoking pan
Next step is to put the salmon on the rack and tightly cover the tin in foil so that the smoke doesn’t escape.
sealed pan
sealed pan
I put the tin in the middle of the oven at about 75-100 degrees C and left it there for a couple of hours before checking it and basting it with honey (I didn’t have any maple syrup).
This is where I found out that I put WAY too much water in there. There was no smoke from the wood chips, but plenty of steam! There was no turning back at this point so I tipped out all the water from the pan, recovered it with foil and put it back in the oven. I cranked the heat up to about 150 degrees C and left it for another 90 minutes before basting again and allowing it to rest before serving.
I was so grateful that I’d managed to salvage it and actually make something edible and really tasty!
finished hot smoked salmon
finished hot smoked salmon
I served it up with a warm potato salad which I got from a recipe from the Guardian.
I’m making hot smoked salmon again. Without a doubt. I’ve learnt some things though. Next time, I’m soaking the wood chips before hand instead of putting water in the tin. I think I might add some more aromatics to the cure to increase the flavour that penetrates the salmon. I’ll use maple syrup too as I think the flavour of it would work better with the salmon. I may even use different wood chips to see what difference this has to the taste.
If you’ve got the tools to do it, I highly recommend you try this too. It takes a bit of preparation and some patience but the results are so satisfying.

2 Comments

  1. February 2, 2018
    Reply

    Awesome! My girlfriend absolutely loves salmon. This is exactly the kind of stuff she freaks out about. Bet dinner is gonna be awesome tonight 🙂

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.