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474 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I went to seattle a little while ago and I bought some smoked salmon from pike place fish market and it was the best smoked salmon I have ate. I was wondering if anybody knows how they make their smoked salmon or if anybody has a recipe close to it. Thanks.

838 Posts
Very easy and very good recipe:

1.5 quarts of water
3/4 cup of kosher salt
1 lb of brown sugar

from there you can add any other spices you like, I add some hot pepper flakes sometimes for a little spice. You may also add more brown sugar if you like the really sweet taste. Good luck.

841 Posts
Tried and true dry brine that has worked very well on any kind of fish tried so far....

2 cups brown sugar
1/3 cup kosher salt
1 T Garlic Salt
1 T Celery Salt
1 T Dry Mustard
1 T Onion Salt
2 T Pepper

Brine about 24 hours. I use tupperware type containers, they stack well in the frig. You wouldn't believe how much moisture is drawn out of the fish with this brine. I then take the fish and put it ont he racks for about an hour so the brine kind of glazes over. Then smoke using alder chips.

The best part is it is things you can find at almost any grocery store. It has been used on fish caught in Cabo :cool: all the way up to Petersburg :tongue: with no complaints yet!

3,604 Posts
I stay simple. It's the best brine after years of testing all kinds. It's modified from a guy I used to work with, who would go to Alaska every year for salmon fishing. He would use the cure below without water as a dry rub on the salmon, but I prefer the wet brine below.

Every time I bring in smoked salmon to work or give some to friends, they all want more and say it is the best they have had. Try it, it's real easy:

OK, I can't remember the exact name of the product, but go to the store, and get some of Morton's salt and sugar cure in the salt and spice section. It's for curing hams I think. Basically, it's salt, sugar, cure, spices, and a touch of smoke flavor.

It comes with a spice packet. I take 1 quart water, 1/3 cup of the salt/sugar cure mixture, and 1/4 teaspoon of the spices from the spice packet that comes with it. Mix all ingredients, and place filleted salmon and brine in a gallon size freezer bag over night. Squeeze out all air bubbles, and the brine will completely cover all parts of fish. Rinse the fish in the morning with fresh water, and dry on the smoking racks an hour or two before smoking for the glazing, called the pellicle (did I spell it right?).

I use the Little Chief Smoker with 3 pans of alder chips. Then, it takes an additional 3-6 hours in the smoker without the smoking pan, depending upon thickness of fish, and weather conditions. Obviously, smoked fish will be done faster in the summer than in the winter. When done to your liking, enjoy!

One modification I do about half the time, is add 6 cloves of cut up garlic and 2 tablespoons of black pepper, for more of a garlic/pepper jerky taste. Also, you can add some Tobasco sauce if you want some "kick".

Or, for the lemon pepper cure, use just the brine above, and sprinkle fish with lemon pepper just before smoking.

The Morton's sugar cure is cheap, and it works fantastic.

:dance: :dance: :dance: :dance:


672 Posts
Try the rest then use the BEST. Here it is!

Granny Griffins Smoked Fish Recipe
(Family Secret)

In a new 5 gallon bucket –
1 Gallon warm water
2 cups salt (I use morton’s Table salt)
2 Cups Brown Sugar
4 tablespoons garlic powder
8 tablespoons onion powder
2 ounce bottle of mapeline
1 ½ cups Karo Corn Syrup

Mix it all real good. Add trimmed filets. I like to cut fish to skin (not through) in 1 1 ½ inch strips. This is enough brine for a 5 rack Big Chief Smoker. Let soak 6 to 12 hours. Dry on paper towels for at least one hour. Brush with honey if you like. Pepper heavy with crushed or cracked black pepper. Preheat smoker 1 hour. Smoke fish 6 to 12 hours or until completely done. Smoking time varies depending on wind and weather.


1,386 Posts
Fishisabonus' recipe is the winner. It was passed to me with rave reviews. I tried it instead of the mix I've been using for years.
It has a little more in it but IT IS GREAT!
Try it and I don't think you will go back to any other.

3,674 Posts
I'll be the Pikes recipe goes something like: Use salt. Use Sugar., Smoke...

The fun about smoking recipes is that they all work pretty good and it's fun to try new ones. I'm going to try SKP's with the Mortons cure - I've always wondered what that stuff was for!

For 5 years I just used a dry brine of 1 part rocksalt and 2 parts brown sugar. It always made excellent smoked fish, but the wet brines are fun to play with too. Isn't it funny that everyone's recipe is "The best smoked fish they've ever had" - like I said most of them turn out darn good!

11,224 Posts
I use FIB's too except I add in dried lemon peel and some dehydrated onion. I somke the fish up one hour short in the smoker, coat with honey and finish in the oven at 250 degrees for 20 minutes. The honey makes a crunchy glaze. Many people have told me it is the best somked salmon they ever had including the fish manager at my local QFC.


2,703 Posts
Try this one. This recepie was developed by a gentleman who lived on and fished the Willamette for over 40 years. It is truly great!!! :smile:

1 Quart Water
1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
1 Teaspoon Ground Cloves
1 Teaspoon Ground Allspice
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Rock Salt
3 to 5 Bay leaves

Adjust salt to taste. Can use less salt if you desire.

Boil and Stir for 5 minutes. Cool Completely. Soak Fish 8 to 12 hours, depending on thickness of fish, which has been cut to size. Remove Fish from brine and let dry before placing in smoker (about 1 hour). Smoke for 8 to 10 hours depending on thickness of fish.

218 Posts
My Favorite!!!!
Filet one medium sized salmon. Pull out the pin bones with tweezers. Leave the skin on.

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup salt
1/4 cup vodka
4 tbs of caraway seeds slightly roasted

Lay one salmon filet in a large glass pan. cover with the mix. Then cover that with a generous amount of fresh dill, not dried stuff. Then put the other filet on top of that so you make a "sandwich" with the mixture touching the meat and the skin-side out on top and bottom.

Weigh it down with something like several plates.

Put in refrigerator for 12 hours. Gently take the filet sandwich out of the pan and wrap it in plastic wrap. Clean out the pan. Then flip the sandwich over, re-apply the weight, and put back in the frig for 12 hours.

Flip every 12 hrs for total of 3 days.

When complete, brush off the mix of stuff -- dont rinse with water.

Put the filets in your smoker and run one pan of chips thru. Total smoke time less than 1 hour. and as cool of conditions as possible, (out side and at nite?), so the smoker doesnt get hot.

Slice real thin and you now have some of the best tasting cold smoked salmon Ive ever had!!!

Ive been using this recipe for years and to me the key is the "fresh" dill and the caraway seeds. I particularly like this recipe because it DOESNT use heavy spices which to me tend to overpower the taste of the fish. These subtle flavors with just a hint of smoke flavor, enhance the taste of the fish, not replace it.

Hope you like it.

ps. BTW this is a slight variation of a Martha Stewart recipe for lox. -- She may be going to jail, but she sure is a great crook....er I mean cook! :grin:

One more thing -- How to make great hors d-oerves with the above smoked salmon.

wheat thins or other thin cracker.
Fresh chives
cream cheese
cold smoked salmon sliced very thin (from above recipe)

Makes great finger food as follows;

Serrate the outside of the cucumber, then cut into very thin slices. Place cucumber slice on top of cracker.

Next take a small dab (teapsoon size) of cream cheese and wrap it with the salmon slice.
You can hold the slice together with a toothpick id you like. Place the tube of salmon/cheese on top of the cucumber.

Garnish with two or three 2 inch long spears of chives stuck into the cream cheese.

Very simple to make but has a wonderful taste and rich presentation appearance. Your guests will rave, guaranteed, especially when you tell them that you caught and smoked the salmon yourself!!! :cheers:
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