Selecting the right salmon is not as easy as it looks sometimes. Not all salmon is the same and there are some significant differences to look for when selecting the right piece of fish. A few considerations are where the fish came from, what region and what type of salmon it is. Here is a quick guide to help you select the right salmon, both smoked and non smoked.
Where Did the Salmon Come From?
Salmon comes from a number of regions in the world, some of the most popular being the United States specifically Alaska, Chile and Canada. While all regions produce some amazing seafood and salmon products, Pacific salmon from Canada’s Westcoast is the gold standard for salmon and smoked salmon products. Salmon coming from this part of North America is richer, more vibrant and has better flavor than salmon from other regions.
Is It Wild or Farmed?
This is something we touched on during our last blog post. Wild caught salmon is hands down better than salmon coming from a fish farm. This is along the lines of eating something organic vs non organic. Wild salmon is less fatty and especially lower in saturated fats. Wild salmon both smoked and non smoked is much richer in color as well, looking at the two pieces of salmon side by side show clear differences between the two. Wild salmon will appear bright red while farmed salmon will show a more pale pink almost peach color. Another big reason to choose wild salmon is due to the pollutants farmed salmon carry. Farmed salmon are raised in a contained area and not able to swim and spawn in their natural habitat and thus will be exposed to more harmful pollutants than wild salmon
Varieties of Salmon
Sockeye salmon is widely regarded as the top choice for salmon lovers although king salmon is a close sidekick to the number one spot. For the purposes of smoked salmon lox, sockeye salmon would be the top choice for Nova Lox as they are brighter in color richer in flavor and have the perfect amount of natural fats to create the best lox possible.
If just having a salmon fillet then sockeye salmon and king salmon would both be great choices, king salmon has more fat than sockeye and would likely give you a meatier feel than the other types of salmon.
If your buying canned salmon your likely looking at pink salmon. Pink is a lesser quality salmon in terms or look and taste but by no means inferior. It still boasts a very rich flavor however its more likely to get used in canned salmon, but its also delicious on the bbq.
So just to quickly summarize, if your looking to eat the best quality flavorful salmon fillets look for: Canadian Pacific Wild Caught King or Sockeye Salmon
If your looking to purchase the best quality Smoked Salmon Lox look for: Canadian Pacific Wild Caught Sockeye Salmon
I hope you have found this guide to be useful in navigating the world of salmon
Jet Set Sam Blogging Staff
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