1 Lemon, Sliced
1 1/2 - 2 lbs Salmon, Fresh
One of the more popular meats to smoke is Salmon and for good reason. Smoked Salmon has a sophisticated and spectacular flavor. The recipe adds to that flavor by incorporating a cedar wood plank and smoking it with sliced lemon on top. The result is a delicious and versatile ingredient as the salmon can be eaten by itself or used in a variety of dishes.
You can smoke a whole salmon or as a filet. If you caught your own salmon, just be sure is has been gutted.
Some people brine or cure their salmon prior to smoking, but with this recipe, you don’t need to. The lemon juice will help it retain moisture during the smoking process. If you do prefer to use a brine, try this recipe:
Combine 8oz gin or vodka, 2 tbsp kosher salt, 1 tbsp cracked black pepper, 1 tbsp ground fennel seed, ¼ cup dark brown sugar for the cure and spread on a sheet pan, place the salmon over the cure skin side up, cover with plastic wrap, refrigerate overnight.
Be sure to soak the cedar plank in cold water for up to an hour prior to smoking. This will help prevent it from catching fire (although if you’re cooking it over low, indirect heat it is less likely to happen). It will also help prevent the skin from sticking to the plank.
The spicy aromas of Mesquite Hardwood will really elevate the flavors in this Smoked Salmon recipe.
Salmon absorbs sweet flavors really well, so feel free to add a drizzle of maple syrup or sprinkle brown sugar prior to smoking.