Like many varieties of fresh fish, salmon will only last for a certain amount of time before it begins to spoil. Fish that has aged in the refrigerator will start to take on the stereotypical “fishy” taste. Fish that has spoiled also makes a prime home for bacteria and other microbes that can cause illness. Buying your fish fresh and storing it properly will help you make sure that you can enjoy your fish at the peak of its flavor.
Salmon can be kept fresh in your refrigerator for up to two days. As soon as you bring your salmon home, unwrap it and wipe it down with a damp towel then wrap it in plastic wrap and place it in the coldest area of your refrigerator. This is typically the back of the bottom drawer in the refrigerator. Try to keep your fish well.chilled around 32 degrees F. If you have leftover salmon after cooking, wrap it up tightly and place it in the coldest area of the refrigerator for up to two days.
Salmon can be kept fresh in your freezer for up to eight weeks. When you bring home your fresh salmon take it out of the packaging, rinse it off using cold water and pat it dry. Cut your salmon into the desired portions and store it in freezer wrap, foil, freezer bags or an airtight freezer friendly container. Note the date the fish was frozen on the container for easy reference. When thawing your frozen salmon, remove the desired portions from your freezer and place them in your refrigerator to thaw overnight. If you are short on time, place the salmon under cool running water to thaw it. Do not place thawed fish or the cooked portions back into the freezer.
Watch a useful video for how to fillet a salmon:
Native American tribes developed a hot method of smoking salmon to preserve it after the fish was caught in the tributaries and streams in the Pacific Northwest. Sockeye, Chinook and silver salmon are commonly prepared using this method. During hot smoking the fish is brined then smoked for several hours. The specific cooking time varies based on the desired texture of the cooked fish. Some companies will vacuum seal the fish before cooking it, which is similar to the process used to can fish, giving it a shelf life that can last up to 5 years.
Lox and nova salmon are cured using a cold brine, though nova is only given a light smoke to preserve the flavor. These fish are vacuum sealed then flash frozen to preserve the flavor. Smoking the salmon cold allows the fish to remain edible when for months even when it is not refrigerated. West Coast Indians in British Colombia have a long history of netting and handing fish in “big houses” to smoke so they can be eaten throughout the winter and spring.
Finally, let’s enjoy a delicious and healthy salmon recipe: