Smoking Northerns

Davey Crockett

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Does anyone smoke Northerns ? I was goin to try a batch but didn't get all of them scaled yesterday before the cold snap. Wondering if it really matters if the scales are on or off ? Some of them filleted and some I just removed the head / tail and guts.
 


Davey Crockett

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my father in law has done a bunch. He didnt scale any of them and they turned out damn good
That's what I wanted to hear , I haven't scaled a fish in 50 years and couldn't find a fish scaler on the whole farm. I had visions in my head of throwing a wire wheel on the hand grinder to scale them.
 


Kurtr

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That's what I wanted to hear , I haven't scaled a fish in 50 years and couldn't find a fish scaler on the whole farm. I had visions in my head of throwing a wire wheel on the hand grinder to scale them.
Haha if you do the wire wheel get a video. I bet you have scales on the ceiling
 

KDM

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Done hundreds of pounds of smoked northern. Some of what I've found. First, the bigger the fish the better. Just standard fillet with skin off. Don't worry about the ribs or Y bones. After you get done smoking them if you use a fork and press down on the ribs or where the Y bones are, they will pop right up and you can pick them out real easy. Put the fillets on a cookie cooling rack in the smoker. That way the smoke will hit the whole fillet. Watch how much salt you have in your brine. Northern has a propensity to absorb LOTS of salt. When your eyes cross at the first bite, you know you used too much. Other than that, gator is real easy to smoke up. My batches rarely lasted more than 48 hours. Goes great with cold beer too. (Grin) Have Fun!!
 

johnr

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Does anyone smoke Northerns ? I was goin to try a batch but didn't get all of them scaled yesterday before the cold snap. Wondering if it really matters if the scales are on or off ? Some of them filleted and some I just removed the head / tail and guts.
Post pictures of your finished product, seems a good way to use the bait stealing bastards up. I don't like pickled fish at all.
 

Davey Crockett

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Same here with pickled fish but canned fish is good stuff and easier to do than you would belive. Next batch is going to be with a little more kick.


https://nodakangler.com/forums/threads/canned-northern-pike-with-a-kick.3219/page-2





Winter caught northern is good table fare but I don't have the patients of a surgeon to remove the y bones so I fillet and keep tail and everything below lateral line and the rest gets frozen and later canned.
 


CrankB8

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Pickled walleye is great. I've used the MeatEater recipe, a recipe from a mid 2010's Dakota Country Magazine, but would do many unquestionable things for the recipe from the Garrison Fire Department. That's the best pickled walleye i've ever had.
 

Davey Crockett

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Post pictures of your finished product, seems a good way to use the bait stealing bastards up. I don't like pickled fish at all.

I'll do that , had them ready today and turned on the smoker and it would only warm up to 40* and the electronics are goofy. Learned a good lesson, smoked a turkey a while back when it was real cold so I put an insulated moving blanket over the smoker and cut a hole for the smoke to pass through. It created moisture in the electronics and fried the control module so I ordered parts that won't be here till monday .
Guess if the circuit board doesn't dry out overnight and magically start working I'll have to refreeze them again.
 

johnr

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I'll do that , had them ready today and turned on the smoker and it would only warm up to 40* and the electronics are goofy. Learned a good lesson, smoked a turkey a while back when it was real cold so I put an insulated moving blanket over the smoker and cut a hole for the smoke to pass through. It created moisture in the electronics and fried the control module so I ordered parts that won't be here till monday .
Guess if the circuit board doesn't dry out overnight and magically start working I'll have to refreeze them again.
That sucks. Seems like the exact luck I would have
 

lunkerslayer

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We smoke the northern we catch in the summer time, and have found that scaling and leaving the skin on makes for a more intact fillet then if you take skin off. It's super messy process to descale but the overall benefits are worth it
 


KDM

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We smoke the northern we catch in the summer time, and have found that scaling and leaving the skin on makes for a more intact fillet then if you take skin off. It's super messy process to descale but the overall benefits are worth it
True. Leaving the skin on will hold the meat together better, but that comes at a price. The price is that the skin continues to produce the slime we all love, even after death. The skin produces it even in the brine and I found that at the end of the brine soak there was always a layer of slime that I took off before putting the fillets in the smoker. I really don't care what way you do it, but for my tastes, keeping the snot off the meat results in a more enjoyable experience from the end product. Carry On.
 

johnr

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True. Leaving the skin on will hold the meat together better, but that comes at a price. The price is that the skin continues to produce the slime we all love, even after death. The skin produces it even in the brine and I found that at the end of the brine soak there was always a layer of slime that I took off before putting the fillets in the smoker. I really don't care what way you do it, but for my tastes, keeping the snot off the meat results in a more enjoyable experience from the end product. Carry On.
:sick::sick:🤮
 

wslayer

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I have never done before but what KDM stated stands to reason that you would have.slime all over the meat of the fillet while soaking in the brine. Yuck . . .
 

lunkerslayer

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Do you let your fillets sit after you take it out of the brine bath before they go into the smoker? i guess I never really thought of the slime since dad was the one who smoked the northerns but i know he liked to smoke northern in the summer because of the step of letting the northern air dry. We kept northerns in the 5 to 8 pound range which is the ones we kept for just pan frying up with the skin off
 

wslayer

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Do you let your fillets sit after you take it out of the brine bath before they go into the smoker? i guess I never really thought of the slime since dad was the one who smoked the northerns but i know he liked to smoke northern in the summer because of the step of letting the northern air dry. We kept northerns in the 5 to 8 pound range which is the ones we kept for just pan frying up with the skin off
Suppose to let them air dry for awhile to form a pellicle for smoke to adhere too. That's what I have done with salmon and eyes in the past anyhow.
 


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