How to pickle (salt) hot smoked mackerel

How to pickle (salt) hot smoked mackerel

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The secret to preparing a large number of dishes is proper pre-processing. Hot smoked mackerel marinade plays a vital role in any delicacy recipe. Strict adherence to proportions will allow you to get an excellent result even with minimal culinary experience.

Methods for salting mackerel for hot smoking

Pretreating fish involves adding copious amounts of salt to improve flavor and shelf life. Most often, recipes are divided into 2 categories - preparation of hot-smoked mackerel brine or long-term dry salting. In the first case, the fish is kept in a prepared liquid. Due to the high salinity of the marinade, the process takes less time compared to the dry method.

Important! Regardless of the approach used, the fish is thoroughly washed and dried with a paper towel before cooking.

For salting, you can use both dry mixture and marinade.

In the second case, sprinkle mackerel with coarse salt on all sides. The duration of the salting of hot smoked mackerel is from 12 to 24 hours. It is best to use coarse sea salt to prevent excessive penetration of the spice into the carcasses.

Selection and preparation of fish

Before applying the desired marinade, you need to take care of a quality base for the future delicacy. Of course, fresh mackerel is best. You can determine the quality of the product by its clean eyes and the absence of a pungent odor. Also, the freshness of the mackerel can be determined by pressing the dorsal part with a finger - the deformation should disappear almost instantly.

Important! For hot smoked delicacy, you can also use frozen fish. The main thing is that the integrity of the skin is not violated.

Depending on the aesthetic preferences of the culinary specialist, you can leave or remove the head. Next, it is imperative to remove the insides - the belly is cut with a sharp knife and the digestive system is removed. The mackerel is thoroughly washed in cold water and wiped off with a towel.

How to pickle hot smoked mackerel

The most common way to prepare fish for further processing is to marinate it. Salting mackerel before hot smoking in this way is a fairly simple exercise. The main ingredients of the marinade are water, salt and allspice. This balance allows you to maximize the pure fishy taste.

For brighter flavors, you can add a wider variety of spices. You can use plenty of garlic to enhance the spicy aroma. Brighter notes are achieved with coriander, basil, thyme and rosemary. It is imperative to maintain the ratio of the components for the marinade - an imbalance can lead to a serious deterioration of the taste of the finished product.

Classic marinating mackerel for hot smoking

The minimum set of spices will not set off the bright fishy taste during the smoking process. This marinade reveals the best aspects of the fish, turning it into a real delicacy. The recipe will require:

  • 2 liters of water;
  • 1 cup salt
  • 1 bay leaf;
  • 1 cup of sugar;
  • 20 peas of allspice.

The minimum set of spices ensures a clean taste of the finished product

To prepare the marinade, dissolve salt and pepper in water, then put it on fire and bring to a boil. As soon as the liquid begins to boil, pepper and bay leaf are added to it. The marinade is boiled for about 10 minutes, then it is removed from the stove and cooled to room temperature. It takes about 3-4 hours to keep the mackerel before hot smoking in such brine.

Recipe for pickling mackerel with garlic for hot smoking

To add a spicy aroma to the finished delicacy, housewives resort to a little trick. They soak hot smoked mackerel in garlic marinade. To prepare it you will need:

  • 2 liters of water;
  • 2 large heads of garlic;
  • 200 g of salt;
  • 150 g sugar;
  • 20 peppercorns;
  • 2 laurel leaves.

Garlic makes smoked fish more flavorful and savory.

This hot smoked mackerel marinade is one of the fastest. It is easy to make - just a 5-minute boil of a saline solution with spices is enough. Then chopped garlic cloves are added to it. The fish is placed in the marinade for 2-3 hours - after this time it is completely ready for further processing.

Hot smoked mackerel pickle with spices

Lovers of bright taste can prepare a rather unusual marinade. It contains a large number of seasonings and spices - their combination guarantees a unique taste and piquant aroma. For 1 liter of pure water use:

  • 10 peas of allspice;
  • 10 black peppercorns;
  • 6 carnation buds;
  • 5 bay leaves;
  • 5 tbsp. l. salt;
  • 2 tbsp. Sahara.

Perfect selection of spices for pickling - a guarantee of great taste after the smokehouse

All ingredients are mixed in a small saucepan and put on fire. After the start of the boil, the marinade is boiled for 10 minutes, then cooled to room temperature. It will take a little more time to salt the mackerel before hot smoking in this way. Given the small amount of salt, the marinade completely penetrates the meat only after 16-18 hours of soaking.

Marinade with coriander for hot smoking mackerel fish

Coriander is one of the most popular spices for smoking and salting any food. It not only noticeably improves the taste of the finished dish, but also gives it a unique aroma. To properly marinate mackerel for hot smoking, you must:

  • 1 liter of water;
  • 50 g granulated sugar;
  • 50 g table salt;
  • 1 tbsp. dry coriander;
  • 5 bay leaves;
  • 5 carnation buds.

Marinade with coriander makes the aroma of the finished product bright and unique

As soon as the liquid in the saucepan boils, salt, sugar and all the spices are added to it. The marinade is cooked for about 10 minutes, after which it is cooled and the product is soaked in it. Before smoking, the fish should be salted for about 4-5 hours, then it is washed and wiped dry with a paper towel.

How to salt hot smoked mackerel

A feature of salting in comparison with marinade is a longer preparation time. For the necessary substances to completely disperse through the tissues, it will take from 8 to 24 hours, depending on the recipe chosen.

Important! To prevent the meat from getting too salty, the skin must maintain its integrity over the entire area.

In order to salt the mackerel before hot smoking, a simple set of seasonings is most often used. Salt, garlic or bay leaf are most often added to the main ingredient. More complex recipes involve the use of other spices or citrus fruits to enhance the flavor of the finished product.

How to salt hot smoked mackerel according to the classic recipe

The traditional way of preparing fish for further heat treatment requires a minimum set of ingredients. To prepare the mixture, you will need salt and ground black pepper in a ratio of 20: 1. For every 200 g of the mixture, one crushed bay leaf is also added.

Salt and ground pepper are the perfect combination for salting fish in front of the smokehouse

The resulting mass is rubbed with mackerel and leave it not 10 hours for salting. After this time, the salt is carefully peeled off, being careful not to damage the skin. The carcasses are washed, wiped dry with a paper towel and sent for further processing.

How to season hot smoked mackerel with salt

A more complex composition of the salting mixture will turn the fish into a real culinary masterpiece. The finished product will become more aromatic, and subtle spicy notes will appear in the taste. The recipe will require:

  • 500 g of salt;
  • 20 peas of allspice;
  • 1 tbsp. coriander;
  • 5 carnation buds;
  • 5 bay leaves.

A bouquet of spices turns smoked mackerel into a real aroma bomb

All spices are ground in a mortar and then mixed in a separate container. The resulting salt mass is rubbed with mackerel carcasses from all sides and removed for 8 hours. The process can be shortened to 6 hours by additionally smearing the mixture into the abdominal cavity.

Salting mackerel with lemon before hot smoking

The addition of juice and lemon peel turns the fish into a real delicacy. The taste is given by citrus notes, a subtle aroma of oranges. To prepare a salting mixture for 500 g of the main component, you will need:

  • 1 lemon;
  • 2 tbsp. ground black pepper;
  • 3 bay leaves.

Lemon not only improves the taste, but also adds citrus notes to it in the aroma

It is important to remember that you only need lemon juice and zest to prepare the mixture. White baffles are not added to avoid excess bitterness in the finished product. Salt, juice and chopped bay leaves are mixed and rubbed with the resulting mass of carcass from all sides. Marinating lasts from 4 to 6 hours, after which the fish is washed and dried.

How much to salt mackerel for hot smoking

The salting time often varies depending on the recipe. It is worth remembering that when using the marinade, pre-treatment takes much less time. Mackerel is placed in brine for 2-4 hours before the start of heat treatment.

Important! For faster salting in the marinade, you can cut the skin of the fish in several places.

The dry method of salting is longer. On average, recipes require 6 to 12 hours of exposure to salt. With the addition of powerful flavors such as lemon juice, the preparation time can be shortened by up to 4 hours - otherwise the pulp can be completely spoiled by the acid.


Hot smoked mackerel marinade is the basis of a well-prepared delicacy. A wide variety of combinations will allow everyone to choose the ideal ratio of salt and aromatic spices.

Watch the video: Smoked Salmon Recipe - How to Smoke Salmon (February 2023).

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