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Smoking Salmon & Humidity


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Hi,

I have been reading the threads about cold smoked salmon and am keen to give it a go.  The temperature for next weekend is not going to get above 4ºC with humidity at about 80%, so, I am planning to raise the temperature in my smoker to 20ºC but this will drop the humidity to just over 30%.

I am planning to weigh the fish to determine when it is ready but just worried that it will dry out too quickly, or am I over thinking it?

Martin

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Do not worry about it drying too quickly as the smoke generator will add moisture to the smoke chamber. It is not like air drying meats where slow drying over weeks is important - here you are looking to remove as much water as you can over a 24 hour period through passing warm smoke over the surfaces of the fish. From a food safety perspective a rapid dehydration is preferred. The thicker the fillet the longer the smoke required as it takes time for water at the centre of the fillet to pass out through the outside flesh. If the fillet is very thick you can assist this process by cutting off "disks" of skin, just exposing the flesh. This allows the water to escape from both sides of the fillet.

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