Specially Selected’s Cajun Flavored Hot Smoked Salmon

Hot smoked salmon? I’ve never heard of this. Or maybe it’s just that I tend to focus on the better known cold smoked salmon that typically graces bagels and brunch plates. But hot smoked is just that; a piece of meat gets put into a wood smoker, and after a while it comes out fully cooked and ready to go. Aldi’s Hot Smoked Salmon tempted me when I walked down the aisle, so I grabbed it. And now I’m a fan of both types of smoking. (Note: not tobacco smoking, however. That’s foul.)

This salmon was a tough to review, because the moment I opened the packet the delicious smell of smoked fish and cajun spice I wanted to devour the entire thing in one go. Willpower and I have never had more than a passing acquaintance. While the salmon is hot smoked, it’s fine to eat cold, and in fact I’d wager that heating it up would only lead to a drier piece of meat. So dig in straight from the packet.

The fish flakes easily, and is packed still attached to its skin. (You can eat the skin if you like, but bear in mind that there can be a scale or two lurking about. Everything is soft and chewy, but fair warning, yada yada.) Spices here are faint, letting the smoke and fish take center stage. I like that; why bother getting salmon if you can’t taste it? That said, there’s pepper and paprika here, especially along the top and bottom edges of the cut.

This salmon is Coho salmon, and has  a lovely reddish-pink color. This type of salmon is usually less expensive than King or Sockeye, but it’s a nice type to pick up if you’re looking for quality with a lower price point. Farm raised in Chile, it’s got the Best Aquaculture Practices seal, and that’s actually a thing. Good to know.

While I ate this right out of the packet, this salmon lends itself to many different types of meals. Flake some over a salad, or some pasta with olive oil. Mix it into a dip, or crumble it onto freshly scrambled eggs. Just be aware that while the package says the serving size is two, if you’re planning on sharing with a friend? Better buy two. We don’t want any fighting over the holidays. That creepy Elf is watching, up on that shelf. He really needs to get a life, that one.

About

Denise Kitashima Dutton has been a reviewer since 2003, and hopes to get the hang of things any moment now. She believes that bluegrass is not hell in music form, and that beer is better when it’s a nitro pour. Besides GMR, you can find her at Atomic Fangirl, Movie-Blogger.com, or at that end seat at the bar, multi-tasking with her Kindle.