If you’re anything like me, you must have asked other people this question, “Can you freeze smoked salmon?” This question may concern you if you like to bulk buy some smoked salmon for future use or you simply don’t want to waste some leftovers.
I had the same dilemma when I over-purchased some smoked salmon the other day. Since I hate to waste it, I scoured the internet and ask some experts about it. To help those with the same problem, I’m going to share what I know.
An Overview About Smoked Salmon
Before we’ll answer the question, let me introduce you to smoked salmon. Due its high price and rarity, smoked salmon is considered to be a type of delicacy. It’s prepared by curing, drying, and smoking.
Even if smoked salmon is high priced, many people still patronize it for its smooth texture, excellent taste, and versatility. You can use it together with scrambled eggs to make a topping for your toasted bagel or make a kedgeree. So the next time that you see a big sale of smoked salmon in the supermarket, buy a lot.
So, Can You Freeze Smoked Salmon?
Of course, you can freeze smoked salmon to preserve its texture, flavor, and overall quality. According to Eat By Date, smoked salmon can stay in the freezer 6-9 months past its printed date. If you keep the smoked salmon constantly frozen at o, then it will remain safe indefinitely.
Since the freezing process may occur when the product is at its best quality, frozen smoked salmon may be considered as the freshest type of salmon available. You can store smoked salmon in its original packaging or divide up and share in freezer bags. You can even wrap it tightly with a tin foil or plastic wrap.
The Freezing Procedure
If you bought a whole smoked salmon, I suggest that you cut it into small, thin slices. This will make thawing more convenient as you don’t have to pull the whole fish when you only need a few. If you bought an already sliced smoked salmon, then there’s no need to cut.
Now, wrap every piece of salmon with two layers of plastic wrap. For extra protection against freezer burns, wrap each piece again with a tin foil. Next, place all the wrapped pieces in a freezer bag and remove all the air out as possible using a vacuum seal, or a straw as shown in this video.
If you don’t like the hassle of wrapping each piece with a plastic wrap and tin foil, you can do flash freezing. On a cookie sheet, place all the pieces in a single layer and freeze for several minutes until frozen. Once all pieces are frozen, store them together in a freezer bag or wrap them with two layers of plastic wrap or aluminum foil.
Thawing Frozen Smoked Salmon
If you like to keep the texture of the salmon, gradually thaw it in the refrigerator below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s not good to thaw the fish at room temperature because it makes it susceptible to bacterial growth. Thawing fish in warm water is also not advisable because it can ruin its lose its moisture and the texture will be compromised.
Once you have transferred the frozen smoked salmon in the refrigerator, wait for it to be completely defrosted. I usually do this overnight. If your working with cold-smoked salmon, I recommend piercing the packaging when thawing in the refrigerator. This is a great way to prevent the growth of bacteria that causes botulism.
Once fully defrosted, remove from the refrigerator, unwrap, and enjoy as you wish. Resist the urge to refreeze thawed smoked salmon because it tends to destroy more of its cellular structure. This can give more chance of bacteria to grow and make the taste even worse.
How To Tell That The Smoked Salmon Has Gone Bad
Your senses can be your dependable instrument in telling if your salmon has gone bad. First, smell it. If it generates a sour or fishy odor, then the smoked salmon has probably gone bad.
Now, use your eyes to observe the appearance of the fish. If it displays a dull color then it might be a sign of spoilage. There are health risks related to spoiled foods so observe food safety and discard them right away if they show any of these signs.
Can you freeze smoked salmon? Absolutely, but be sure to wrap it tightly with aluminum foil, freezer bags, or plastic wrap. If it’s time for you use to use it, thaw it in the refrigerator until fully defrosted.
If you have tried freezing smoked salmon, tell us how you did it in the comments section. Please share this article with your friends and family if you find this information helpful.