By John Albrich | 09/04/2013
I’ve mixed BorX O Fire and Fire Brine to make wet brines many times, but I’ve never tried doing that with Fire Cure and Fire Brine and honestly I never intended to do so. Fortunately, an accident on my part forced me to try mixing the cure and brine and left me with the best eggs I’ve ever had.
Usually with Fire Cure I carefully pour the cure in a Ziploc bag. Meanwhile, this time I wasn’t paying attention (I was probably on Facebook) and I dumped way too much Fire Cure on my eggs. Still, not paying attention because I normally cure so many eggs it’s become a habit, I put the eggs in the fridge and went off to make dinner.
Unfortunately, when I checked on them I noticed they were getting hard because I put too much cure on them. Not wanting to waste those eggs I decide to experiment by adding red Fire Brine. I did this because I thought the Fire Brine would add extra color and soften the eggs. Surprisingly, the Fire Brine helped the eggs suck the cure in better and also plumped them up bigger than I expected.
Normally, when using Fire Cure by itself the berries juice out and then sucks the juice back in, but this time the berries sucked all the Fire Brine in and they were huge and a beautiful red. In fact, they turned out to be some of the best eggs I’ve cured in 30 years.
Watching the Fire Brine work on the eggs was like blowing a balloon up. It expanded the egg slowly; similar to when someone pumps up an air mattress by hand. This morning I grabbed a berry (that’s what we call a glob of cured eggs for those of you from other parts of Salmon Country) and put it in a small glass of water and it milked like crazy. These eggs are going to be perfect for salmon season!
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Start with blood free skeins. For salmon, I don’t really butterfly them open. I open them halfway, cut them in chunks and place them in a gallon Ziploc. This recipe allows for two egg skeins per bag.
Sprinkle red or pink Fire Cure on skeins. A light coating over the top of the eggs is enough. Make sure they are covered. I only sprinkle cure on one side because later on I’m going to roll them around to get the cure on the entire skein.
Add a tablespoon of Fire Power (pure krill powder). I do this now so the eggs can suck in the krill scent for salmon.
Gently roll the bag around, massaging the eggs to make sure the cure gets into the eggs thoroughly.
Let the eggs rest in the Ziploc for an hour. By doing this the eggs will juice out.
After an hour, take a half bottle of red Fire Brine and add to the Ziploc. The eggs will suck in the brine.
Let the Ziploc sit in the fridge for two to three days, rotating the eggs daily. This allows the eggs to suck the maximum amount of cure back into the egg.
For salmon I like a wet egg. I don’t dry them at all. Now it’s time to take the skeins and place them in a quart mason jar before preserving them or for immediate use.
Personally, I vacuum pack eggs. This allows me to store the eggs without them getting moldy or bacteria. They’ll also last longer. I use my Foodsaver Wide Mouth Jar Sealer to vacuum pack the jars. Make sure you wipe the edges of the jar clean. If there’s juice it wont seal properly.
Editor’s Note: Pautzke pro John Albrich resides in Lewiston, Idaho and mostly fishes the Snake and Clearwater. For more info please visit reeltimefishing.com.