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Lox/Gravlax with a little liquid smoke? Anyone tried it/would it work?

piano boy Dec 8, 2011 02:22 AM

Would that be complete blasphemy? I don't have the equipment for a proper cold smoke and I enjoy the firmer texture of the cured salmon. I have a bottle of liquid hickory smoke that I use in seasoning and what not and thought it might work.

Has anyone tried this? Any ideas on how to go about it?


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    luciaannek RE: piano boy Dec 8, 2011 05:47 AM

    I have not tried it, but I'd imagine the worry would be about it getting too smokey too fast. I'd try it, but I'd go for less smoke rather than more, and up it if you need to.

    1. Delucacheesemonger RE: piano boy Dec 8, 2011 05:57 AM

      IMVHO, it would be an abomination to use that stuff anywhere, but especially in a cured method with no cooking. l cure mine with just salt, sugar, and alcohol, but on the times l wanted a smoked touch, l added a bit of truly smoked salt. See http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/811115

      4 Replies
      1. re: Delucacheesemonger
        Tom from Raleigh RE: Delucacheesemonger Dec 8, 2011 08:53 AM

        I agree. I would not use it anywhere either. All is not lost, you can get the firmer texture you seek by curing. It's super easy. Is gravlax smoked? I don't think lox are, just cured.

        1. re: Tom from Raleigh
          BobB RE: Tom from Raleigh Dec 8, 2011 12:28 PM

          I've used liquid smoke successfully (in very small quantities!) in braised meat dishes, but would not dream of letting that stuff anywhere near cold-cured fish. Gravlax and nova lox are not smoked dishes at all, they're brine-cured, so why even consider it?

          Many other types of cured salmon are smoked, but cold smoking is a tricky process best not attempted by a novice without adequate up-front research.

          1. re: BobB
            luciaannek RE: BobB Dec 11, 2011 07:42 AM

            I don't understand the liquid smoke hate. We know it just smoke bubbled through water right? It's really great and very. The taste is very authentic without all the trouble.

        2. re: Delucacheesemonger
          sbp RE: Delucacheesemonger Dec 8, 2011 01:35 PM

          I think it would overpower the fish if not used in just the right amout, but who knows what that is? I'm curious, though, as to why you call it an "abomination," but smoked salt is "true." Both are natural products, made from passing real smoke through the base (one being water, the other salt). Liquid smoke is no less real than smoked salt, isn't it?

        3. LaureltQ RE: piano boy Dec 8, 2011 12:34 PM

          Cooks illustrated didn't have anything bad to say about liquid smoke, so realistically, I wouldn't be concerned with using it.

          I have used a tiny amount in my salt/sugar/dill mixture once. I used so little it was undetectable and my husband (I don't really get into gravlax much, but he loves it) said that it's fine without the smoke so don't waste a whole fillet trying to up the smoke content.

          1. scubadoo97 RE: piano boy Dec 8, 2011 03:55 PM

            Liquid smoke is nothing more than condensed smoke in liquid. When I cold smoke my salmon I end up with a little condensation of guess what? Liquid smoke on the surface of the fish from the ice packs that keep the salmon under 70 degrees. I can't cold smoke in an ultra dry environment here in Florida. Just isn't going to happen.

            My guess is that if used sparingly it would not be so bad and would give you a little bit of smoke flavor on your lox.

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