5 lbs of wild salmon, whole or in steaks
4 gallons of water
1 ½ cups of brown sugar
1 cup of lemon juice
5 bay leaves
Prepare salmon by cutting into thick steaks or fillets.
Combine water, sugar, lemon juice, bay leaves and pepper in a large, airtight container.
Add salmon to the brine, making sure to fully submerge the steaks.
Each piece of salmon should be fully submerged during the brining process. Allow to sit for between 8-12 hours.
Remove salmon from the brine, and let dry.
(Note: air drying the salmon prior to smoking is an important step so be sure not to skip it!)
Lay salmon on a baking rack and place in a well ventilated area for 2 to 4 hours or until dry.
Smoke brined salmon in a smoke at 180 degrees F for 5 hours.
Allow to cool, and serve or store in an airtight container or freezer.