A while back I discovered how easy it was to hot smoke salmon. I love cooking salmon – grilled or baked – and I love eating traditional smoked salmon, or cold smoked.
Hot smoking is kind of a cross between cooking and cold smoking. You apply smoke during the cooking process to give the salmon a lovely woody, smoked flavour.
I’ve posted a few hot smoking recipes before. Here’s the how-to of easy hot smoking and some of the recipes using hot smoked salmon.
How to hot smoke salmon:
All you need is an aluminium foil container, aluminium foil, a cake (wire) rack, some wood smoking chips, and a barbecue and you are right to go!
A few sprigs of fresh rosemary and/or sage leaves
Salmon fillets, skin on
Sprinkle of sea salt
Sprinkle of sugar
1-2 teaspoons chili paste or sambal oelek (or leave out if you prefer)
Preheat your barbecue to high. You will need a large aluminum foil container, readily available at supermarkets. It should be big enough to hold the size of the fish fillets you are going to smoke. You will also need a wire rack, the kind for cooling cakes on, that will fit inside the container.
Line the base of the foil container with wood smoking chips. These chips (usually hickory) are available at barbecue supply stores or hardware stores. Scatter the rosemary and sage over the wood chips.
Place the wire rack inside the container, so it sits about halfway down.
Sprinkle the salmon fillets with salt and sugar and rub with the chilli paste and a drizzle of olive oil. Put the fillets skin side down on top of the wire rack.
Cover the container with a large piece of aluminium foil, that’s been doubled over. It should completely cover the container. Using a metal skewer, pierce holes in rows across this foil lid. This is to allow the smoke to escape.
Place the container on the barbecue, turn down to a medium heat and put the top of the barbecue down. If your barbecue doesn’t have a top, you may have to cook for a little longer, as cooking with the top down captures more heat.
Cook for 10 to 15 minutes – the time taken will depend on how well cooked you want your salmon and the presence/absence of a barbecue top. After a couple of minutes the container will start to smoke.
After the 10-15 minutes of cooking, turn the heat off and leave it to sit for 5 minutes before opening the container. This will allow the residual smoke to continue to penetrate the salmon.
You can always check the “doneness” of the salmon by cutting into it, but, like a barbecued steak you risk spoiling the look of it. However if you are serving to fussy eaters who like their fish cooked through, then it’s worth doing.
This is the basic method. You can serve the hot smoked salmon in a myriad of recipes – here a few pics and links to some recipes.
Hot Smoked Salmon Fillet with Jamie Oliver Coconut Rice and Greens
Hot Smoked Salmon Pasta: Jamie Oliver 5 Ingredients https://thequirkandthecool.com/2017/09/10/hot-smoked-salmon-pasta-jamie-oliver-5-ingredients/
Hot Smoked Salmon Club Sandwich – Jamie Oliver’s Comfort Food https://thequirkandthecool.com/2014/11/09/hot-smoked-salmon-club-sandwich-jamie-olivers-comfort-food/
Salmon Fillet with Spaghetti and Pesto https://thequirkandthecool.com/2014/01/26/salmon-fillet-with-spaghetti-and-pesto/
Hot Smoked Salmon, Pappardelle and Garden Greens Salad https://thequirkandthecool.com/2013/10/12/hot-smoked-salmon-pappardelle-and-garden-greens-salad/