Cold Smoked Salmon - There can be few things in life more satisfying than being able to make your favourite delicacy whenever you like. Here I show you the steps to making Cold Smoked Salmon. If you'd like to learn the full process for making your own Smoked Salmon then why not sign up for my One day Smoked Salmon course here at Coldsmoking HQ.
Filleting - First, make a slit along the ventral (belly) side from the vent (anus) to the gill plates and discard the guts. This is best done under a running tap to remove all traces of blood.
Lay the fish flat on your cutting board Make a cut towards the spine as close to the head as possible behind the gills. When your cut reaches the spine, turn the knife through 90 degrees so the blade now faces the tail. Keep the blade flat as you cut towards the tail. To remove the second fillet, turn the fish over and repeat the process for the first filet.
The rib bones can be removed using a flexible knife and the pin bones can be removed using tweezers. Trim the edges of the fillet for a neat appearance and you're ready to cure.
Curing - Lay the salmon skin side down in a dish on a thin bed of salt. Lightly sprinkle the salmon with salt. More on the thickest parts and less on the thinnest areas. Cover and cure in the fridge for up to 12 hours. Curing with salt is an essential step in making the salmon safe to eat without firther cooking.
Drying - Remove the salt by rinsing the salmon fillet under cold running water. Pat dry and place in an uncovered dish. refrigerate for 24 hours until the pellicle (a thin sticky surface film) has formed. Youre now ready to smoke the salmon.
Smoking - You can cold smoke your salmon using either fruit wood or a traditional Oak wood. Smoke is a personal taste so you can smoke for up to 24 hours or less if you prefer a more subtle smoke flavour.