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Author Topic: Cold Smoking Tuna  (Read 588 times)

IronNoggin

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Cold Smoking Tuna
« on: February 14, 2020, 12:48:31 PM »

Bit of a lengthy and picky process, but the end result is well worth the effort IMHO!

Partially thaw said Tuna: - it is easier to loin when it is still fairly stiff deep inside:



Rip the hide, and yes, Rum Required for this entire process!



Loin & remove brown meat:



Mix well 4 parts demerara sugar with 3 parts coarse salt (I like Sea Salt for this) and layer around 1/2 inch deep in bottom of tote. Toss in loins:



Smother loins with mix:


Cold enough outside this next step likely wasn't necessary, but I tossed bags of ice on each tote after they were stuffed into the big stainless smoker (no room for such in our fridge):



Shut the doors and let sit overnight.

This thread will be continued as the process develops...

Cheers
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IronNoggin

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2020, 02:05:25 PM »

Took overnight and then some to get to this desirable stage.
The dry brine is "dry" no more, and it is easy to see just how much moisture it has sucked out of the loins.
The loins themselves have changed both in color and consistency.





Next up: the Wet Brine process...
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Blood_Orange

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2020, 05:03:03 PM »

Awesome, keep the updates coming! :D
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IronNoggin

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2020, 05:56:55 PM »

Wet Brine:

3 gallons (Canadian thank you very much) of water
4 cups Sea Salt
5 cups demerara sugar
2.5 cups real maple syrup
1 bag peppercorns
A decent handful of chopped dill.


Should mix this a fair bit before you need. it so it can settle.
Test run by dropping a fresh raw egg into the mix:



She floats, all good- Carry on...
If not, a smidgen more salt, whip into a frenzy, and re-try until it does.

Toss the loins in - no need to rinse.



Now about as fascinating as watching paint dry.
Stir occasionally through the eve.
Let percolate.

Tomorrow desalination, onto prepped grills, and begin the glaze process (if all goes well...)

Cheers,
Nog
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IronNoggin

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2020, 03:16:39 PM »

They came out of the wet brine earlier today.
Big changes in both color and consistency! They swelled back up quite a bit!



So, onto one of the most fussy and critical steps - Desalination.
I prefer to have a LOT of water surrounding the loins at this point, and to keep a slow but steady flow of fresh water into their domain:





If you take your drain cap off your cooler, you can replace it with a large soft drink cap.
Drill a small hole in the center of that so you have flow both top and bottom:



Having too much Tuna is never an issue if you know how to deal with it.
And I don't see a lot of point in repeating the process when one good run will do...





The ones on the uphill side will freshen just a tad sooner than those on the downhill.
Move the latter into the bigger tank while you pat dry the first lot and get ready for the grills.
By the time you've accomplished that, the other should be ready.

Move the loins around in the fresh water every 10 minutes or so, and keep a damn careful eye on them!
Too little, the salt will be overbearing.
Too much, and they become non-recoverable mush!!

I do the double taste test - nip a little off a couple differing loins (should slice very thinly with a sharp knife).
Taste. You will know it when you realize what you are looking for...

This lot is now off to the grills, glaze and fans.
Back atcha when able...

Cheers,
Nog
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IronNoggin

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2020, 10:32:19 AM »

After about and hour and a half, the loins began to look a little washed out (don't worry - this is normal and will soon be rectified).



Thin Slice & Taste Test said: Good To Go!

]

Funny thing about that picture - left it up on the phone while I transferred the rest of the fish to totes, then turned, saw this, and actually tried to pick it up and eat it. LOL Yummy already!

Then, onto the racks to dry:



These dried very quickly - as in an hour after hitting the racks with NO fans, they were already crying for the Glaze!



Took advantage of that hour to prep the glaze itself. nearly 1/2 Maple Syrup, a shot of Rum Extract and top off with Black Bacardi:



And apply:



It sucked the first application up within 45 minutes, so got hit again.
Already you can see a color transformation as they darken from the glaze.
Normally I would have hit the fans at this point.
But with dark rapidly buzzarding in, temps into the minuses overnight, and the way these were already sucking up the brine I decided to leave them overnight without the fans. My Buddy hit them with the glaze again at midnight and said "Looking Good".

Today they get rolled around, glazed again, and finished drying with the fans on...
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IronNoggin

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2020, 12:53:39 PM »

As expected, the loins sucked up the glaze some, leaving just enough on the surface to give them that classic Glassy finish.
Dry to the touch, they are ready for the smoker...



Yet another fine color / consistency change - beginning to look downright appealing!



Load 'em up:



And pour the cold smoke to them:



Ambient air temperature is three degrees. No heat transfer into the smoker. Excellent conditions...

See ya in a few hours...
Nog
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IronNoggin

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2020, 05:27:55 PM »

Initial Taste Test...



Horrible... NOT!!!    ;D

Cheers,
Nog
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CohoJake

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2020, 06:05:14 PM »

How long did you smoke it? Also, how long does it keep when you cold smoke like that?  I assume you are freezing most of it.
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IronNoggin

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2020, 09:36:38 AM »

Smoked for 3.5 hours, then let sit as the equipment clears itself of smoke (around another 1/2 hour).

It is completely cured well before the smoke hits it. All that does is add a hunt of color and a little taste.

It would last at least a couple weeks in the fridge if it ever made that far... It never does around here.

The majority is indeed vacuum sealed and frozen for future reference.

Cheers,
Nog
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IronNoggin

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2020, 11:26:55 AM »

That's a Wrap!



Cheers,
Nog
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Blood_Orange

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2020, 05:04:55 PM »

Looks amazing! Thanks for sharing your photos and expertise  ;D
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firstlight

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #12 on: March 20, 2020, 07:18:37 PM »

I was fortunate enough to give this a try and it is amazing.
A very buttery texture with a nice light smoke.
Nog is the King when it comes to anything food. :)

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Old Blue

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #13 on: March 20, 2020, 08:23:15 PM »

Awesome stuff and love the finished product look.

What's your ball park estimate for desalination time?
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IronNoggin

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Re: Cold Smoking Tuna
« Reply #14 on: March 21, 2020, 09:09:08 AM »

What's your ball park estimate for desalination time?

Was about 2 hours this go.

Cheers,
Nog
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