Cold Smoked SalmonIt was 22°F, sunny with no wind today in Columbus… sounded like a perfect day to cook outside to me! Today, I smoked some salmon in my small charcoal smoker. Just a small meal tonight with a pound of salmon seasoned with cilantro, garlic and lime. You can view my recipe by clicking here.

Salmon on the smokerI used hickory wood chips today and worked to maintain a cooking area temperature between 180 and 210°F. The total smoking time today was just about 5 hours. I started the charcoal fire about 12:30pm. The salmon steaks went on at 1pm and came off at 5:30pm.

Finished smoked salmonI prepared my smoker with a 20 minute burn-in to pre-heat the charcoal and burn off the starter fluid. My hickory chips sat on top of the charcoal in a tinder box to keep the wood chips from burning too fast. After all, I was smoking, not burning. My water pan was half full to keep the salmon moist. I added a can of beer to the water. Some say it adds flavor to the food. I’m not convinced, but figure what the hell. My uncle bought the beer so I’m feeling less guilty. 🙂

The salmon was served with some of Grandma’s parsley potatoes and some mixed vegetables. A basic, but healthy meal.