Sunday, April 9, 2017

hot smoked mackerel

I went for a dive here and set my little net, and didn't get a lot - but there was one yellow-tail scad - mackerel

They're common enough at this season - we get huge shoals feeding on the galaxias, with predatory fish feeding on mackerel beneath them - this isn't something I'd had within 40 feet of the shore in about 3 meters of water. typically a schooling fish, so I was surprised to get one.

I filleted and salted it.
Left the salt on for about 20 minutes - I normally aim for 3 for frying. Rinsed it off, patted it dry and ground tassie mountain pepper onto it. I let it airdry for a bit and then hoy smoked over some gum saw-dust. It was less golden than I liked - a bit too dark. I served it on buttered cous cous with morrocan salad and little black-skinned tomatoes.

Not too bad, really. Total cost half a cup of cous cous and a little salt.


  1. Dave, with the smoking of fish, is there anything that is a “must do”. I do a bit of fly fishing in the lakes over in Victoria and the missus won’t eat the lake trout -says it tastes muddy. So was going to try and smoke one for her. Got any tips?

  2. Dave The key to ANY kind of smoking is to airdry to form what is called a 'pellicle' (thin dry 'skin') on the meat. Otherwise the smoke 'runs' (you get dribble lines where smoke and water mix)which for some reason is very bitter and the smoke doesn't penetrate well. 'Muddy' tasting fish may be seasonal - they pick it up from diatoms which aren't there all the time. If the water is cold and very clear, probably will be OK - if there's been a flush of new water and nutrients it's likely to bring on a diatom bloom. I would go with hot smoking for your missus - it's easier to do well. Some salt to draw the moisture out, wash it off pat it dry is always good. You can buy commercial sawdust, but wattle or red gum work well.