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Scottish Salmon

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Smoked salmon is a preparation of salmon, typically a fillet that has been cured and then hot or cold smoked. Due to its moderately high price, smoked salmon is considered a delicacy.

In the UK, under food labeling laws, only smoked salmon produced totally in Scotland (from fishing or farming to packaging) can be called 'Scottish Smoked Salmon'. If salmon is sourced from elsewhere, then subsequently smoked in Scotland, it may be labelled 'Salmon smoked in Scotland'. Alternatively, Scottish sourced salmon that is then smoked elsewhere, may be termed 'Smoked Scottish salmon'.

In Scotland, salmon is usually cold smoked. The cold smoking does not cook the fish, resulting in a delicate texture. Although some smoke houses go for a deliberately 'oaky' style with prolonged exposure to smoke from oak chips, industrial production favors less exposure to smoke and a blander style, using cheaper woods.

The smoking process has changed over the years and many contemporary smokehouses have left the traditional methods using brick kilns behind in favor of commercial methods. In fact, only a handful of traditional smokehouses such as John Ross Jr, whose kilns date back to 1857 and have been listed by Historic Scotland, remain in use.

Irish and Scottish smoked salmon is considered a delicacy, even with increased availability since the advent of fish farming from the 1970s. Smoked wild salmon is still available, but in Europe is very rare and very expensive and usually only available from specialist dealers, like Forman's and John Ross Jr in Aberdeen.

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