Highland Smoked Salmon.

Production.

The unique flavours we impart in our Salmon, for which we are famous, are produced using a number of methods. Learn how we smoke our Salmon and create the finest of produce.

Brief History of the Smoking Process.

Smoking meats and fish is a time honoured method of food preservation using mostly salt and wood smoke. Both the salt and the wood smoke have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties making the food last longer.  In the past, before the advent of refrigeration, the amounts of both had to be so great, the food was almost inedible without further treatment typically soaking it in water for 24 hours before use. Nowadays the salt and smoke levels  Can be much lower making for a beautifully delicate product relatively low in salt content.

Two types of smoking can be used; hot and cold.  As the name suggests hot smoked salmon is cooked at higher temperatures resulting in a flakier and drier product, with a beautifully golden brown colour. Cold smoked salmon is smoked at much lowee temperatures which maintains its unique velvety texture.

Smoking.

To start the smoking process at Highland Smoked Salmon, only the best Salmon are selected.  These are gutted and kept on ice until they are out of rigor and ready for filleting. The salmon are then filleted in our state of the art filleting area, using the most modern equipment available in the industry. This minimises handling reducing damage to the fillets, increases productivity keeping our costs down, and maintains the temperatue of the fish throughout the process below 4 deg C.

Dry salt and sugar is then sprinkled on the fillets - a thicker coating at the head and reducing to a mere sprinkle at the tails. These are then placed in a chill until the salt content has reached it optimum level.The salt is then washed off with water to stop the curing process.The sides are then smoked  using a mixture of oak and beech smoke until the required flavour profile has been achieved. The hot smoked salmon process is very similar although smoked at higher temperatures resulting in a far more golden colour and flakier texture.

Slicing.

Smoked fillets are then sliced to customer requirements, vacuum packed, labelled and shipped under refrigerated conditions to our Customers around the world

Gravadlax.

During the Middle Ages, gravadlax was made by fishermen, who salted the salmon and lightly fermented it by burying it in the sand above the high-tide line. The word gravadlax comes from the Scandinavian word grav, which means literally "grave" or "hole in the ground" (in Swedish, Norwegian, Danish and Estonian), and lax (or laks), which means "salmon", thus gravadlax is "buried salmon".

Today fermentation is no longer used in our production process. Instead the salmon is lightly smoked and "buried" in a dry marinade of salt, sugar, herbs and spices, and left to marinade to absorb the flavours. Once matured the fillets are sliced and vacuum packed before shipping to our customers.