Smoked Salmon

The other salmon that was caught over the weekend were Pinks, good eaten right away, or smoked.  A little drive by pickup was made this morning.  Our friends brined the salmon last night, I picked it up this morning, cold air dried it, and smoked it.  The deal was struck with a small commission to be paid to the smokehouse.

This recipe can be doubled, tripled, etc. for the amount of salmon you have:
3 Cups water
2 Tbsp kosher salt
2 Tbsp brown sugar
3 Tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp peppercorns - smashed
1 tsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp vodka (this is the only thing I would not double or triple, maybe just add 1 more tbsp)
Cut salmon into small pieces to your liking.  Brine salmon for at least one day or even two.  What we smoked today was just shy of a day.  I like to use zip lock bags as less brine is needed and squeezing out the air aids in getting the brine into the meat.  Drain and dry on paper towels.  Lay pieces skin side down on a rack set over a baking sheet.  Air dry using a fan blowing over the salmon for about 2 hours.
We smoked the salmon using charcoal and applewood at 140-160f for 2 hours.  Half way through the smoking, I brushed honey on top of the salmon.  Let cool completely and wrap tightly.  The salmon should keep for up to one week in the refrigerator, or frozen for several months.  I used my FoodSaver vacuum sealer to store the salmon.  
Sweet goodness!


  1. Hi Mary,
    Wow that looks great! I smoked a batch of assorted fish just yesterday - not self caught, although it was local (Baja) stuff. I also did 2 pounds of bay scallops - talk about a sweet snack!

    I never thought of putting vodka in this type of brine. Do you know what effect it has?


  2. Hi Sherry, the scallops sound fantastic. I will have to try that. Don't know why I initially started adding vodka to my smoked salmon brine. I think it just felt right at the time and since it turned out well, it's just something I decided to keep doing. It's just a little flavor I think.


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