MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm) v8.02
       Title: Smoking Salmon And Trout Part I - Caring for the Catch
  Categories: Fish, Smoke, Info
       Yield: 1 text file
   Fish begins to spoil the minute you land it. Enzymes and bacteria go
   to work immediately especially in the slime, gills and intestines. To
   reduce spoilage and maintain flavor you must bleed, clean and cool
   fish quickly.
   ~1- Remove the slime and scale [if applicable] as soon as possible.
   ~2- Cut the throat and remove the gills. The intestines can wait a
     few hours. -3- Remove the intestines. Save the liver, roe and milt.
   Remove the
     kidney, that dark streak along the backbone by cutting away the
     covering membrane on either side of the kidney,  where it is
     attached to the flesh. Then scrape out the kidney. -4- The head may
   stay on but remove the head now if you have to save
     cooler space. Leave the lug bone, that bony plate behind the
     head if you are going to smoke the fish as the lug will support
     the handling cord. -5- Cool the fish to close to freezing with
   chipped ice. Make sure
     that there is a layer of ice between every layer of fish in the
   Careless handling can bruise fish. Use a net if possible; if gaffing,
   gaff the least valuable part- the stomach if possible. If using a
   fish club to kill quickly and prevent threshing, one sharp blow to
   the head is enough.
   Rigor Mortis: a dead fish will stiffen but in time will relax again
   unless it goes into accelerated rigor form being too warm. If you try
   to straighten out a fish in Rigor or the fish goes into heat induced
   Rigor, you will tear the flesh disturbing the appearance and allowing
   succulent juices to escape. Prevent Rigor damage with prompt cooling
   and filleting before or after the fish has passed through rigor but
   not during it.
   Cooling: Ice has a terrific ability to absorb heat when it melts as
   it took a tremendous amount of heat removal to freeze the water in
   the first place. 2 lb of ice melting will do the same job of cooling
   as 37 lb of block ice or extremely cold water. Chipped ice will melt
   faster and therefore chill fish quicker than block ice. Pack the
   belly cavity of cleaned fish and make sure there is a layer of ice
   between every layer of fish.
   To transport frozen fish you need dry ice or Eutectic ice, as melting
   ice would thaw frozen fish. Eutectic ice is a solution of 23% salt by
   weight and 77% water by weight, which freezes at 0 deg F. [-18 deg
   C.], in a break proof plastic container. You can buy these or make
   your own.
   Extracted from: Smoking Salmon & Trout by Jack Whelan. Published by:
   Airie Publishing, Deep Bay, B.C. ISBN: 0-919807-00-3 Posted by: Jim