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This is a dry brine that I find makes a wonderful smoked fish. This recipe will produce a fish that is almost candied.
  • 1.25 cups non-iodized salt
  • 3 pounds dark brown sugar Mix dry ingredients in bowl.
  • This recipe was plenty to smoke 4 average size (28 inch) steelhead.
  • Adjust the quantity to the amount of fish you are going to prepare.
  1. Place fillets or pieces of fillet into a non reactive baking dish.
  2. Pack each layer of fish with generous quantity of the sugar and salt mixture.
  3. Cover the dish and refrigerate.
  4. Rotate (every 12 hours or so) the fish and make sure that it is covered with the mixture.
  5. The fish will exude all the moisture the brine needs
  6. and will eventually be covered in a thick briny ooze.
  7. Some of the sugar might not dissolve but that is normal.
  8. I usually smoke my fish after 48 hours using alder.
  9. I do not rinse my fish before I smoke it - I simply wipe off any excess ooze
  10. and place on the smoker racks.
  11. I smoke my fish in an electric smoker between 6 and 9 hours depending
  12. on the temperature outside, the temperature that is reached inside the smoker,
  13. and to the degree I want to smoke it.
  14. I stop smoking it when it looks dark and caramelized.
  15. When it is done let it cool in the smoker and remove.
  16. If I am going to freeze any of it I wrap it in saran wrap and place into ziplocks.


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