Smoky Hickory and Brown Sugar Cured Salmon

This salmon is quick cured first to draw our extra moisture, then hot smoked over hickory wood for a firmer texture. Morton’s Tender Quick is a curing mixture available in the spice section of the grocery store.

  • 1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp Old Bay seasoning
  • 1 tbsp Morton’s Tender quick
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 6-8 ounce salmon fillets, skin left on or off

Combine the brown sugar, Old Bay, Tender Quick, and pepper in a small bowl and blend well.

Rinse the salmon under cold running water and pat dry with paper towels. Cover the fillets evenly on both sides with the brown sugar mixture and pack them in a large nonreactive baking dish, covering them with any remaining sugar mixture.

Cover with plastic wrap and let cure, or marinate, in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Prepare an indirect fire. When it’s ready, throw on 1.5 cups of hickory chips. Place the fillets on the pit, cover, and cook until the fish flakes easily, 40 to 60 minutes.



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