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Jan 4, 2009 03:58 PM

Portlock Copper River Sockeye Smoked Salmon

Someone brought us a package of this as a gift. I don't think it's lox exactly, so it isn't an automatic bagel topper. The box suggests Fettucine Primavera, but that's not a favorite of mine. Any interesting suggestions, anybody?

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  1. Portlock is a local company (I live in Seattle) and does two types of smoked salmon. One is a cold-smoked Nova, which is a soft, flexible, thinly sliced salmon that you can use and serve like lox. The other is a hot-smoked salmon that comes vacuum-packed in one big chunk. It's drier and more strongly-flavored--it will chunk nicely but can't be sliced. Or is your salmon in a can?

    Sounds like you have the second kind. It can be used in any kind of pasta dish, or you can mix it with sour cream and/or cream cheese for a dip or a sandwich spread, or try folding it into scrambled eggs with a bit of sour cream/cream cheese and some snipped chives. I'll bet a souffle would be good, too.

    Whichever kind you have, Copper River is a type of salmon that's exceptionally full-flavored and moist. The Copper River in Alaska is very, very long and very, very cold, so salmon native to that river have to store up extra-large amounts of fat in order to make it all the way back to their spawning grounds. They have a very short season, just a couple of weeks, usually in May. In Seattle, fishmongers and restaurants take out huge ads, plan entire menus around the arrival, etc. It's kind of like all the hoopla surrounding the day that Beaujolais Nouveau arrives.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Erika L

      I agree, it probably is the hot smoked type. For a start I wouldn't try to cook with it. Just open the package, and nibble it, may with some crackers or good bread. Have some mayo and/or pickles on the side. Treat it like a good ham.

      If you don't eat it all in the first sitting, it will keep in the fridge for a while. Once you have sampled it you will have a better idea of how to use the rest. Scrambled eggs sounds like a good idea.

    2. We were given several pounds of hot smoked salmon for Christmas(not Portlock but from here: ). We're still working our way through all of it. We've eaten a lot just on it's own as suggested above. I've made a couple pasta dishes with it(tossed with a meyer lemon cream sauce and some peas was the best). Several scrambled egg dishes. I made salmon cakes out of some of it and used those as a base for some poached eggs and hollandaise. Made a potato hash with some of it and served eggs over it.

      1. And why not on a bagel? If it works on a cracker . . . . We got some for a wedding gift, with a beautiful fish shaped platter. mmm, 13 and a half years ago and I can still taste it!

        1. As someone who eats smoked salmon every week, I must say that Portlock's is amongst the worst! I wouldn't touch this brand again!

          2 Replies
          1. re: wise1too

            I was really grateful for everyone's suggestions, but now that w12 has spoken up, I have to agree. In the event, I really didn't like it at all. De gustibus and all that ---- Maybe I would have liked the first kind erika spoke of better.

            1. re: wise1too

              What brand do you recommend? I live in Seattle so can get my hands on pretty much whatever.