Indian Candied Salmon: A Unique Blend of Indian and Icelandic Culinary Traditions

Welcome to our Icelandic fishing blog, where we dive deep into the world of fishing, fish recipes, and the culture surrounding this age-old practice. Today, we’re taking you on a culinary adventure to explore a unique dish: Indian Candied Salmon. This flavorful dish combines robust Indian spices and traditional Icelandic candying techniques, resulting in a fusion of flavors that is simply unforgettable. 

The History of Indian Candied Salmon

Indian Candied Salmon, also known as native candy salmon, is a tantalizing blend of Indian and Icelandic traditions. Despite its name, the dish isn’t a dessert. Rather, it’s a savory treat made by curing salmon in a sweet and spicy marinade before drying it.

Salmon holds a significant place in both Indian and Icelandic cultures. In India, salmon is considered a nutritious delicacy, often served on special occasions. In Iceland, salmon fishing is not just a hobby or a sport; it’s a way of life that significantly contributes to the country’s economy.

The Role of Salmon in Icelandic Fishing

Salmon fishing is an essential part of Iceland’s heritage. It’s a lucrative industry, providing jobs and contributing significantly to the local economy. How to eat salmon candy or Indian Candied Salmon forms a part of this rich tradition, showcasing the versatility of this popular fish.

Understanding the Process of Candying Fish

Candying fish is an age-old process that involves curing fish in a sweet mixture before drying it to create a concentrated, flavorful treat. Today, modern techniques have adapted this process, but the essence remains the same, preserving the fish’s natural flavors while adding a delightful sweetness. 

A Detailed Recipe for Indian Candied Salmon

Ready to prepare your own Indian Candied Salmon? Here’s a step-by-step guide:


  • 1kg fresh salmon fillet
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon crushed black pepper 


  1. Clean the salmon, and cut it into strips.
  2. Mix the sugar, salt, chili powder, and black pepper in a bowl.
  3. Coat the salmon strips in the mixture, ensuring all sides are covered.
  4. Refrigerate the coated salmon for at least 24 hours.
  5. After 24 hours, rinse the salmon and pat dry.
  6. Allow the salmon to air dry until a shiny skin, known as a pellicle, forms.
  7. Smoke the salmon at a low temperature until it’s dry and glossy.
  8. Enjoy your homemade Indian Candied Salmon!

Variations of Indian Candied Salmon

While the traditional Indian Candied Salmon is made from regular salmon, you can also use other varieties like Candied Sockeye Salmon. You can also experiment with different flavors in the candying process, adding ingredients like garlic, maple syrup, or soy sauce.

Smoked Candy: A Delicious Twist

One popular variation of Indian Candied Salmon is smoked candy. The process involves smoking the salmon after candying, resulting in a unique, smoky flavor that complements the sweetness of the candy beautifully. 

Squaw Candy: A Cultural Delicacy

Another cultural delicacy worth exploring is Squaw Candy, a smoked salmon recipe that originated from the Native American tribes. Also known as Squaw Candy Smoked Salmon, this dish is made by curing the salmon in a spiced mixture, smoking it, and then drying it to create a chewy, delectable treat.


What is Salmon Candy?

Salmon candy, also known as Indian candy or salmon jerky, is a type of preserved salmon that has been cured with a sweet and savory glaze before being smoked or dried. It’s a traditional Indigenous food of the Pacific Northwest region of North America, particularly among Indigenous communities like the First Nations in Canada and Native American tribes in the United States.

How to make candied salmon?

The process of making salmon candy typically involves the following steps:

– Curing: Salmon fillets are first cured in a mixture of sugar, salt, and sometimes other seasonings or spices. This step helps to both flavor the salmon and draw out moisture, which aids in preservation.
– Glazing: After the curing process, the salmon fillets are coated with a sweet glaze. The glaze is usually made from a combination of ingredients like brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, soy sauce, and various spices. This glaze gives the salmon candy its distinct sweet and savory flavor.
– Smoking or Drying: The salmon fillets can be smoked or air-dried, depending on the desired texture and flavor. Smoking imparts a smoky flavor and further helps in preservation, while air-drying removes moisture from the fish and intensifies its flavor.

How to eat salmon candy?

Salmon candy is typically enjoyed as a flavorful and protein-rich snack or appetizer.

Here’s how you can eat salmon candy:

– Unwrap: If the salmon candy is packaged, remove it from its packaging.
Serve: Salmon candy can be served as-is, without any additional preparation. It’s ready to eat once you unwrap it.
– Texture: Salmon candy has a chewy texture, similar to beef jerky. Some people enjoy the chewiness, while others may find it an acquired taste. It’s a good idea to savor the texture and flavor slowly.
– Flavor: The sweet and savory glaze gives salmon candy its distinctive taste. You’ll experience a combination of flavors, including the natural richness of salmon, the sweetness from the glaze, and any smoky or savory notes from the curing and smoking process.
– Pairings: Salmon candy can be enjoyed on its own, but it can also be paired with other foods to create interesting flavor combinations. Some people enjoy it with cream cheese and crackers, in salads, or even on sandwiches.
– Storage: Keep any uneaten salmon candy in an airtight container to maintain its freshness. Because it’s a preserved product, it has a longer shelf life than fresh salmon.

Remember that taste preferences can vary, so if you’re trying salmon candy for the first time, approach it with an open mind. It’s a unique culinary experience that’s deeply rooted in Indigenous traditions and the flavors of the Pacific Northwest.


Indian Candied Salmon is a delightful fusion of Indian and Icelandic culinary traditions. Its unique blend of flavors and textures makes it a must-try for all food lovers. Whether you follow our detailed Candied Salmon Recipe or experiment with your own variations, this dish is sure to be a hit. 

We invite you to share your experiences making and tasting Indian Candied Salmon in the comment section below. We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Happy cooking and happy fishing!

Leave a Comment