New Zealand King Salmon Preparation, storage & handling
King Salmon’s delicate texture and characteristic rich flavour make it delicious served raw, cooked or smoked.
Cold Smoked. After curing in a dry brine of salt and sugar, the salmon fillets are smoked at a low temperature in a natural wood smoke. The salmon resembles the texture of raw salmon, with a lightly smoked flavour.
Wood Roasted (Hot Smoked). After curing in a dry brine of salt and sugar, the salmon fillets are smoked at a high temperature in natural wood smoke, presenting a delicate melt in your mouth texture with a smoky flavour finish.
King Salmon is typically available in a number of different forms: Whole. The salmon is cleaned inside and presented with or without the head. Fillet. The sides of the salmon are separated from the ribs and backbone, producing two long portions of meat. Fillets can also be purchased boneless. Portions. A fillet is cut into a number of smaller portions. Portions can also be purchased boneless. Steaks. The entire salmon (without the head or tail) is cut width ways, producing portions of around one inch in thickness.
Cooking Methods Salmon is ready to eat when the flesh turns opaque. It is quite safe to serve salmon rare and it can also be eaten raw. Salmon cooks very quickly and should flake easily when tested with a fork. Oven Bake Place the salmon in a baking dish that has been greased or lined with tinfoil. Brush the fish with oil, lemon juice or a mixture of both. Bake at 180°C, allowing 8 to 10 minutes for 2cm thick fillets. A good rule of thumb is to measure the whole fish at its thickest part and cook it for 10 minutes per 2cm thickness (approximately 45 minutes for an average 2kg fish). Grilling Always preheat the grill and use a medium-high heat level. Grill the salmon about 10cm from the heat source and allow 1 to 2 minutes on each side for a fillet or 3 to 4 minutes on each side for a steak.
Poaching Avoid using thin fillets. Simmer in liquid flavoured with slices of lemon and parsley for 4 to 6 minutes ensuring there is enough liquid to cover the salmon. Poach whole salmon for 6 to 8 minutes per 200g. Poached salmon’s flavour improves if it is served the next day and at room temperature. Steaming Place the salmon in a steamer over boiling water. Allow about 4 minutes for fillets or steaks, and allow about 5 minutes for each 200g portion of whole salmon. Microwaving Arrange portions of salmon with the thickest part at the outside edge. Dot with a little butter or sprinkle with a tablespoon of water, wine or milk. Cover with cling film and pierce this a few times with a knife. Allow 4 to 6 minutes per 500g on 70 percent power. Allow to stand for 2 minutes. BBQ The cooking time will depend on the temperature of the barbecue. If the temperature can be controlled, a medium-high heat should be used. Brush the salmon with oil and the season. Allow 1 to 2 minutes on each side for a fillet or 3 to 4 minutes on each side for a steak or kebabs.
Storing Salmon Fridge Salmon will keep in a fridge (at 1 - 3°C, 34 - 36°F) for 3 to 4 days perfectly well. Keep whole salmon lightly covered with foil or cling film to prevent it from drying out. Place steaks and fillets in a sealable plastic bag, put in a bowl and cover with ice. Freezer Put whole salmon in a sealable freezer bag, making sure as much air as possible is removed, and freeze. Place steaks or fillets individually in sealable freezer bags. To ensure that the salmon freezes quickly, lay the freezer bags flat on the shelf, rather than in piles on top of each other. If frozen in a sealed freezer bag, salmon will last up to six months in the freezer. Defrost slowly at room temperature.
Whole Salmon Season the fish and brush with oil or lemon juice. Place slices of lemon and parsley in cavity and wrap in foil. Measure the whole fish at its thickest part and cook, following the instructions above for either oven bak