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Ray-Bob’s Simple Smoking Solution

Ray-Bob's Simple Smoking Solution
I first used this recipe in 1966. A fellow Boeing employee and friend, Ray Vomenici gave it to me and I used it to smoke Chinook and Coho salmon caught in the Puget Sound area, and Steelhead caught in Northwest Washington area rivers. I've used it successfully ever since and never had anything but delightful results.
  • Line 5 Gallon Bucket with a plastic trash bag.
  • Add 3 Gals of Water,
  • 1½ C Kosher or Non-Iodized Salt
  • ⅓ C Dark Brown Sugar
  • ⅓ C Honey
  • 1 T Granulated or Minced Garlic
  • 1 T Tarragon
  • 1 C Dago Red Wine (Optional... adds a nice, very subtle fullness to the flavor)
  1. Mix well to disolve the sugar and salt. Individually place 1 - 2 Lb pieces of fresh salmon or steelhead in the solution, cover with a large plate and set a jar of water on the plate and place in a cool area to steep for 12 - 24 Hrs.
  2. Remove fish from brine, gently and lightly rinse in cool water, pat dry with a cotton towel. Place pieces in preheated (140-160F) smoker and maintain temperature for 6 - 15 Hrs depending on thinkness of fish pieces and dryness desired. I keep fish at least 15" away from coals and smoke slowly at about 150F using
  3. alder, hickory or mesquite soak-wetted chips in a charcoal fire. Take your time - we never rush the good stuff. Cool fish pcs and the sample but don't eat 'em all, you WILL want some tomorrow. Savor the flavor. It doesn't get any better than this.
  4. Note: It's a good idea to dispose of the brine solution.
  5. Addendum: I've used this same saline solution and smoking process on pork loin, fresh ham, and turkey. You have to make some minor adjustments in time and for pork, and I increased the temp for the 1st 6hrs to near 190F, then reduced to 150F and increased the smoking time proportionately, smoking a 14lb hame for 24hrs, Ray said he got the recipe from an Indian over on the Olympic pennisula. Of course, he may have just told me that.


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