To make this Smoked Indian Candy Jerky Fish Recipe, I use a Bradley Original and an Auber PID controller. The recipe turns out so amazing, to the point people are buying salmon fillets and giving to me to smoke. I typically use the steelhead I have caught. You can lighten up on the sugar or honey if you don’t like it that sweet. But keep the maple syrup as indicated.
Here is a secret. Smoked fish is one of the rare foods that actually improves with freezing. Of course, try it when it’s done smoking, but consider freezing a majority of the finished product for ultimate quality. For best results vacuum pack with foodsaver.
2-2/3 cups Maple Syrup (use real maple syrup!)
1-1/3 cups honey
½ cup pickling salt (test with brine complete and add extra until egg floats)
2/3 kg Demerara Sugar
1 tbsp red pepper flakes (optional)
4 cups water
Add salt and Demerara sugar to water and simmer low until solids are dissolved
Cool down mixture and add maple syrup and honey. Stir until uniform.
Fillet fish, remove skin and remove pin bones
Rinse filet in cold water to clean
Slice into jerky thin pieces, about ¼” or less. Should be sliced like gravlax, but a little thicker.
Add fish pieces to cooled brine in a food grade bucket
Cover and place in a cool place (fridge or fruit cellar)
During brining, stir gently about every 3-4 hours to ensure uniformness
Brine for 24 Hours
Remove fish from brine (DO NOT RINSE)
Lay fish on drying racks.
Place racks in a cool place (fridge) with something underneath to catch the drippings
We use the fridge and stack our racks (stack one long, one short way alternating, so they are spaced).
Dry for 24 hours until the fish is dry and tacky to the touch and has taken on a reddish translucency.
Preheat the Bradley smoker to 120 degrees F
Remove fish from drying racks, spray smoking racks with non stick spray (Bradley jerky racks work the best).
If you use the same racks for drying and smoking, remove fish from racks after drying, clean racks and spray with non stick spray before smoking.
Sprinkle red pepper flakes on fish before going into smoker (optional)
Put fish into smoker
Smoke with Bradley discs of your choice. Alder is preferred.
Smoke with below times and temps (total of 5 hours)
120 Degrees F – 2 Hours
145 Degrees F – 2 Hours
165 Degrees F – 1 Hours
Remove a test piece at about the 5-hour mark and test. If it’s done to your liking remove. If it’s not dry enough, go in half hour extra increments until done.
Remove from smoker and allow to cool before packaging