Author Topic: SALMON: Freezing, Storing, & Thawing  (Read 397 times)

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Offline John Pierce

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SALMON: Freezing, Storing, & Thawing
« on: July 19, 2020, 10:02:30 AM »
FREEZING, STORING, & THAWING SALMON

SALMON TYPES
  • Sockeye: Freezes best.
  • Coho (Silver): Freezes well.
  • Spring (Chinook): Freezes ok.
  • Pink: Does not freeze well, as it has a much softer flesh than the other species. However fresh pink salmon can be smoked and then frozen, and it will keep well and eat well under that treatment.
FREEZING - BEST, FLASH FROZEN
  • The key to maximizing frozen salmon quality is for the fish to be frozen as rapidly as possible to minimize cell damage, thus optimal is commercial flash frozen.
FREEZING - SECOND BEST, COOLER > FREEZER
  • Second best after If no freezer (camping), put two or three bags of crushed ice in cooler, add a bunch of rock salt, this is like you're making home made ice cream. The rock salt ice slurry will almost freeze your salmon fillets, sealed in bags in a matter of minutes, like last freezing.
  • Then when home/have access to freezer, place fish in freezer.
FREEZING - FREEZER
  • Freezing whole "in the round" (don't gut it) salmon is the very best way to freeze any fishes the skin is the best wrap of all. Just slice the gills while the fish is still alive so they pump all the blood out of the system and then freeze asap. Then take it out after frozen and dip it in a water/karo coron syrup mixture and back into the freezer a couple times to build up a rime of ice. This will last several months.
  • If portioning the salmon, best is vacuum bag to reduce air freezer burn.
  • If no vacuum sealing, water pack a meals worth of salmon in ziplock bags. simply put the salmon in the bag, fill with water and using something like the tray from your ice chest, stand the bags upright, put the tray and all in the freezer just in case a salmon bone has punctured one of your bags. once the fish are frozen, remove tray and stack in freezer.
  • To further increase quality, can wet brine for 1-2 hours max, pat dry with paper towel, sprinkle little bit of brown sugar, put into refrigerator on a rack over night to let it set up, then seal and freeze.
STORING
  • Extremely cold holding temperature is best.
  • Salmon will freeze well for 10 months. But fat does not freeze unless very cold ie -7C, thus when rotating your freezer fish, consume Chinook first as they are way more fatty than coho and pinks.
THAWING
  • Like almost all seafood, best is slowly thaw in fridge, (a cold ice chest will suffice if you're camping) as this will help the flesh to keep its natural texture.
  • Rapid thawing even in cold water will contribute to a somewhat "mushy" texture due to the tissue breakdown from the rapidly melting ice crystals, (faster than it froze).
« Last Edit: July 19, 2020, 11:49:24 AM by John Pierce »