Ask Niki: Smoked fish

Q: Apparently there is ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ smoked fish – what is the difference?


A: Smoked fish is a versatile, economical ‘no cook’ ingredient – and a good way to get those healthy omega-3s.

The two different types of smoked fish you’re referring to are different types of smoked salmon. ‘Hot smoked’ salmon is found in fillets and comes apart in flakes, like regular cooked fish does. This salmon has been smoked at a high heat over wood – you might also see it sold as ‘wood roasted’ salmon. Try it in salads or toss it through cooked pasta or couscous.

‘Cold smoked’ salmon is the type that comes in thin, translucent slices. This salmon has been cured, usually in a brine mixture with salt and sugar, and is then smoked at a low temperature. It has a different texture and is often used for canapés – try it on crackers or blinis with a smear of reduced-fat cream cheese.

All smoked fish can be pretty high in sodium so it pays to use it sparingly. Luckily, because of its strong taste you need just a little to give quite a bit of tasty flavour.

First published: May 2011

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