Fillets of Wild Salmon
For the Brine
1 gallon cold water
1 quart teriyaki OR soy sauce
1 cup pickling salt
2 Lbs brown sugar
2 Tbsp garlic powder
3 Tbsp cayenne pepper
Step 1: Prepare the fish
Fillet salmon. Leave the skin on and remove all bones. (Very important for excellence!)
Step 2: UNIFORM STRIPS
Cut meat into uniform strips, 3/8 to 1/2” wide and 3-6” long, or as long as your smoker racks can handle. The key here is to get uniform thickness cuts for uniform brining and smoking. The length is important only as far as your own packaging preferences. The strips will have a tendency to fall or sag through the larger grid racks.
Step 3: BRINING
Soak in your own brine recipe for 12 hours at refrigerator temps. For more complete brining throughout, place a stainless steel or wooden grate over the top of the meat to hold it under the brine. Stir fish a few times during the brining process.
Step 4: GLAZING
Place fish in a single layer on drying racks and ensure that the pieces DON’T touch each other. Dry in a cool, shady place until hard pellicle forms. Fish will have a tough, shiny coat and will be slightly tacky to the touch. A fan can help speed the drying process. Turn the fish over 2-3 times during the Glazing process to ensure more complete glazing. It is during the glazing process that you can sprinkle on certain spices (e.g. cayenne pepper) and/or visual enhancers (e.g. parsley flakes).
Step 5: SMOKING
Smoke using the following Bradley Smoking guideline:
100°-120°F (37.8-48.9C) for 1-2 hours, then increase to
140° (60C) for 2-4 hours, then increase to
175° (79.4C) for 1-2 hours to finish