Cold/Hot smoked snapper

For the discussion of how you cook your catch, post your favorite recipes in here for all to try
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Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:13 pm

It's very difficult to find a cold smoked snapper recipe on the net and I can understand why. Snapper is such a delicate textured fish that it can be overcooked. A workmate caught 2 good Snapper over the weekend and wanted me to smoke it for him. So here's my 2 cents into the procedure of smoking Snapper.

Sea Salt and brown sugared the fillets, backbones, roe, wings and 2 large heads (cut in half with a hacksaw and gladly kept for my dinner :clap: ),
Store in a well ventilated fridge for 14 hours. (Add cut lemons and place near the fish so the missus doesn't complain about the smell.)
After 14 hours, remove from the fridge and wash off the salt and sugar with strong sea salted cold water. Pat dry with paper towels and lay into a dish.
Place into the fridge for a further 12-14 hours until the flesh is sticky to touch.
Before smoking I drizzled some Chelsea maple Syrup onto the fish for colour.
Into the smoker with the fish and on went the UFO cold smoker burning 10 mm sized Manuka wood chip. The smoker should be full of smoke for 1 hour.
Off went the cold smoker and on went the hot smoker maintaining a constant temperature of 100 degrees Celsius.
With a digital food thermometer set to 55 degrees Celsius I carefully prodded the flesh to ensure the flesh was cooked properly but kept it's fine texture. I also had to make sure that I wasn't losing heat every time I opened the door, so being quick is key.
After the fish was cooked according to my food thermometer the fish is removed, cooled and stored in the fridge overnight.

I know this is not a traditional cold smoke recipe but the feedback has been very positive and the fish has been a huge hit at work today. The guy who caught the fish was so stoked about the results he gave me these micro jigs a thank you gift. He later told me that he tests micro jigs for a certain brand and there could be more coming my way :y: .

But if anyone else could add to the thread about cold or hot smoking tips and tricks I'm all ears.
(The 55 degree Celsius cooking temperature for Snapper came courtesy of; ... eChart.htm)
Smoked Snapper.jpg
Smoked Snapper2.jpg
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PB: Snapper=79cm. Rogers Road, 26/10/14

PB: Gurnard=34cm. Orere Point, 17/06/15

PB: Kingfish=75cm. Omaio, 13/02/16

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Marc N
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Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:47 pm

What you're doing looks great, I'm salivating at the thought. :clap:

I'm not suggesting, that the below, is better or worse than what you are doing.

What follows is just my recollections of what an old bloke taught me when I was a kid, about cold smoking.

He would use a derelict wardrobe and hang the fish on hooks inside.

The smoke would be delivered to the wardrobe via 6~7 foot long, pipe about 9 inches in diameter, it may have been cast iron.

The fire would be small, at the distal end of the pipe and he would use drift wood, not any tantalised stuff, but any natural wood, that'd washed up. This, with it's salt and marine bits and pieces, smoked quite well when burnt.

The smoke was sucked up the pipe as the wardrobe, had a few vent holes at the top, thus creating draft up the pipe.

The smoke was never hot on the fish, and he'd keep the smoke fire going all day, from morning till bed time and then let the whole lot rest, until the next morning.

I believe he salted the fish for a few hours the night before the next days smoking.

I wish I had the time to do all that


Yu Co
Fishmaster Angler 14 'yak
Fishing for every thing from Trout to Kingfish

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Mon Nov 13, 2017 11:50 pm

had some smoked snapper the other day that i got off my father.

i dont think he brined it as he never does when hes in a hurry and the flesh hadnt firmed up the same way brined fish does, tasted like salt,pepper,maple syrup rubbed into it.
very delicious.

also that orange striped jig near the top is the business.
ZMU8769 - OK Prowler 4.7

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