BLUEFISH, BASIC SMOKED BLUEFISH
Makes 6 servings.
• 2 pounds fillets or steaks or 3 pounds dressed bluefish
• 1 charcoal grill with cover or hood
• 1 pound hardwood chips (hickory or other)
• 2 quarts water
• 1 cup salt
• 1 gallon water
• 24-30 charcoal briquets
• 1/4 cup salad oil
• 1 basting brush
• 1 oven thermometer (available at hardware and most stores)
Soak hardwood chips in 2 quarts water for several hours
Dissolve salt in 1 gallon water to make brine. Marinate fish in brine 30 minutes.
Make fire with charcoal briquets. When coals burn down to a low, even heat, spread evenly over bottom of grill: cover with 1/3 of wet chips.
Drain and dry fish. Baste grill well with oil. Place fish on grill, skin-side down, about 4 to 6 inches from heat. Insert oven thermometer along center back of grill.
Liberally baste top of fish with oil, close grill cover and smoke fish as follows:
• Fillets or steaks: about 30 minutes at 250°F; 1 hour and 30 minutes at 150° - 175°F.
• Dressed: About 30 minutes at 250°F; 2 hours at 150° - 175°F.
Do not let fish dry out; baste frequently with oil while smoking.
Do not let fire flame up. Keep coals well covered with wet chips while cooking to maintain low temperature.
Maryland Dept of Agriculture Seafood & Aquaculture