Yes, candied smoked salmon sounds a bit strange, and no, it is not something you would find in a candy store. Candying is most typically a preparation used on fruit or nuts to preserve them. However, you can candy many things, including salmon. We’ll show you what it means to candy smoked salmon, what you can expect to pay for it, and how to make it yourself.
What Is Candied Smoked Salmon?
The goal of many preservation methods is to remove as much water as possible from the food. Candying removes the water from the food item by heating it in the hot sugar mixture. Once the water evaporates, the sugar replaces the areas where the water once was. The crystallized sugar then preserves the food.
Smoking is the main way that people cure salmon. But some choose to go the extra step of making sweet smoked salmon. Fresh salmon has a water content of 69%. The smoking process removes a good portion of this water, but some still remains. Cooking the smoked salmon in sugar removes even more of this water. The resulting texture is similar to jerky, chewy and tender.
Candied salmon is sticky and glossy once the sugar hardens. Many eat it as is, but others like to crumble it, like you would bacon bits, and use on salads or in soups. Even though sugar is a crucial part of the process, the smoked salmon does not always have a super sweet taste. Many add savoring seasonings and ingredients like pepper or soy sauce to prevent an overly sweet smoked salmon. You might have a hard time finding candied salmon in your local grocery store. There are places to buy it online. We will give you a price grid to let you compare prices. You may also want to make it yourself. We have compiled a recipe and tips for you to DIY it.
Compare Wild Smoked Salmon Prices
How To Make Candied Smoked Salmon
Many candied salmon recipes start with fresh salmon. You will need 2 to 5 pounds of salmon cut into strips no more than 2 inches wide. The strips expose more of the salmon to the smoking and candying to most effectively preserve it. You will then want to dry brine the salmon in a salt and sugar mixture. For more specifics on this step, you can reference this recipe. After brining, comes the smoking.
We like this smoking process which uses a cold smoking method over several hours. Every 30 minutes or so for the duration of the smoking process is when you should brush on your candy mix. This mixture typically includes maple syrup and pepper, but you can get creative with what you add in. Each layer of the maple syrup will form a lacquer on the fish. Check the salmon at various points in the smoking process and take it out once it is at a texture you like it. Store the finished product in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer.
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