Steelhead trout...brined, dried and smoked!

Discussion in 'Fish' started by porkulese, Apr 30, 2012.

  1. This was the first run with the new Master Forge dual fuel smoker, quite happy with the results overall although next time I'll use a little more wood to enhance the flavor of the smoke.  Sorry for the mediocre quality of the pics, I used my cell phone for these ones rather than my digicam!

    Fish has been brined for 45 minutes, now set out on the grills to dry.

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    Using sugar maple chips.

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    After the smoke cleared...

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    Time to peel off the skin!

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    Dang that looks good!

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    Tasted great!

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    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2012
  2. johnnie walker

    johnnie walker Smoking Fanatic

    I've never smoked steelhead, yet! How does it compare to smoked salmon, does it have that strong fishy taste like regular trout? I have smoked salmon a few times and it turns out good.

    It looks like yours turned out good.
     
  3. thsmormonsmokes

    thsmormonsmokes Smoking Fanatic

    Now post pictures of them when they came out of the river!!  I've only been able to fish for steelhead a few times and they are a total gas.  Loads of fun.

    Great looking Q.  I had a rainbow I caught in New Zealand smoked by a local shop while I was there on a semester abroad.  I'd eat it with a smoked sharp cheddar cheese I bought at a corner store near where I lived.  WOW.  It doesn't get much better.
     
  4. That's some good lookin steelhead!
     
  5. austinl

    austinl Smoking Fanatic

    Great Fish!  I smoke steelhead trout all the time because it is cheaper than salmon where I live and tastes very similar.  Why'd 'ya remove the skin; its great to eat!
     
  6. austinl

    austinl Smoking Fanatic

    Tell us about your brine.  I just tried a new one on the last steelhead I did based on white wine and soy sauce.
     
  7. The taste was very mild, not overpowering at all, and this particular fish had a bit of fat on him so the meat was quite tender (not sure if steelhead are like this in general or if we just got a chubby sucker!)  We were going to get out some cheese to go with it but it was so good no one wanted to go in the house to get it ready once the fish was done, we stood around the table outside scarfing fish for a good 20 minutes solid before we were finally too stuffed to eat anymore on the spot!  Next time though we'll bust out the good stuff, we live about 30 minutes away from a GREAT cheese factory, St. Alberts, they have PHENOMENAL cheese product!!!

    http://www.fromage-st-albert.com/eng/eng.htm

    He he, I "fished" him out of the cooler at Costco!

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    As far as the skin goes, well, I've never been big on fish skin but I suspect it would have been quite good as it seemed quite tender as well, just not my thing is all.  [​IMG]

    The brine recipe and process that I used is one I got from a post on the forum, linking & quoting below for reference and to give credit where it is due!

    http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/90289/smoked-fish
     
    katemail13 and gridflash like this.
  8. The taste was very mild, not overpowering at all, and this particular fish had a bit of fat on him so the meat was quite tender (not sure if steelhead are like this in general or if we just got a chubby sucker!)  We were going to get out some cheese to go with it but it was so good no one wanted to go in the house to get it ready once the fish was done, we stood around the table outside scarfing fish for a good 20 minutes solid before we were finally too stuffed to eat anymore on the spot!  Next time though we'll bust out the good stuff, we live about 30 minutes away from a GREAT cheese factory, St. Alberts, they have PHENOMENAL cheese product!!!

    http://www.fromage-st-albert.com/eng/eng.htm

    He he, I "fished" him out of the cooler at Costco!

    [​IMG]

    As far as the skin goes, well, I've never been big on fish skin but I suspect it would have been quite good as it seemed quite tender as well, just not my thing is all.  [​IMG]

    The brine recipe and process that I used is one I got from the following post on the forum in a reply by MikeBham:

    http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/90289/smoked-fish

    Brine:

    ½ gallon of water at room temperature

    1 cups Kosher salt

    ½  cup brown sugar

    1/6 cup lemon juice

    1½ tsp garlic juice (or 1½ tsp garlic powder)

    1½ tsp onion powder

    1½ tsp allspice (it's best to sift this into the water to avoid clumping

    1 teaspoons black pepper
     
  9. grabber

    grabber Smoke Blower

    I got steelhead at Sam's, much cheaper than salmon.  Used it for lox.  Very good at 1/2 the price.
     
  10. mds51

    mds51 Meat Mopper

    When buying the fresh Salmon at Sam`s Club for making Lox , should it be frozen first and then dry cured and cold smoked to take care of any Parasites?? Or does the salt from the dry cure for two or three days take care of all the bugs???
     
  11. jrod62

    jrod62 Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Looks good
     
  12. soslow

    soslow Fire Starter

    I second that skin, I like it a little crispy ! It's great your smoke looks great also

    John
     
  13. Steelhead is a great fish to catch and eat. I fished them for years in Lake Superior. When you catch them while trolling, the come to the surface of the water and dance on their tails on top of the water to try to spit the hook. Just as a point of interest, Steelhead Trout is a Rainbow Trout that has left stream life and adapted to live in the lakes. They grow much larger in the lakes and loose their prismatic stripe which runs downs the center of the scales on each side. See the difference below.

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    THIS IS THE STEELHEAD ABOVE, NOTICE THE CENTER LINE BUT NO RAINBOW OR PRISMATIC COLOR IN THE CENTER STRIPE. GROWS LARGER AND LIVES MOSTLY IN THE LAKES. ALSO FEWER SPOTS ON THE UPPER BACK AND DORSAL FIN.

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    THE RAINBOW TROUT IS A MUCH MORE COLORFUL FISH WITH A BEAUTIFUL RAINBOW PRISMATIC STRIPE RUNNING DOWN THE SIDES. LIVES MOSTLY IN STREAMS, SMALL LAKES AND MOUTHS OF RIVERS. ONE OF IF NOT THE ONLY TROUT WITH  ORANGE TO BLOOD RED MEAT DEPENDING LARGELY ON THEIR DIET. THE FLESH IS SOFTER AND MORE DELICATE THAN SALMON. DELICIOUS EATING FARE.
     
  14. thoseguys26

    thoseguys26 Master of the Pit

    Looks good. Looks just like how I prefer mine. Nice job.

    I've only kept about 2-3 steelhead in my life. I've caught 100's. Inch for Inch they are one of the strongest and hardest fighting fish around. I've yet to catch a sea run steel and all of mine have come from the great lakes.

    I fly fish and I've gotten beat up by many many steel. They are no easy task to land. They fight, jump, head shake like crazy! That's why I release all of mine because I love them soo much and I can eat other trout/fish. Brookies are my favorite to eat, hands down. have nothing against others who eat them, I just don't.

    Here's what a great lakes steel looks like. What a BEAUT!

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    Last edited: May 18, 2012
  15. Beautiful fish....!
     
  16. Great info and pics guys, thanks!!!
     
  17. jonboat

    jonboat Smoke Blower

    Cool thing about steelies is that when they head for the rivers to spawn, they get those great colors back. Out in the lake, we call them "chromers" because they're mostly shiny silver, once they hit the rivers, though, here's what happens to them:
     
  18. Nice!  More good info, thanks!
     
  19. thoseguys26

    thoseguys26 Master of the Pit

    They get their spawning colors when they enter fresh water. That's a male steel. They transform and grow a kipe jaw like the one in your picture. It's pretty amazing.
     
  20. Wow those pics are great.  I just started fresh water fishing last year and the largest trout so far (farm raised and planted in a pay lake) is a little over 8 lbs.  I've been tuna fishing all my life, but i'm enjoying the "hunt" of catching freshwater fish as it really is pretty hard to find and catch them unlike salt water fish which are all about the fight.
     

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