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Monday, May 21, 2012

Gravlax

I kept forgetting the gift salmon in the freezer two weeks in a row and finally got around to making it this past week.  We had it with bagels and cream cheese (actually, it was neufchatel) and capers and chopped shallots.  Not exactly the thing on which one typically eats gravlax, but let's face it: bagels and preserved salmon just go together.

It was spectacularly good.

The recipe used fennel instead of dill, because the author didn't happen to have fresh dill in the garden.  I used tarragon, which is kind of anise-y like fennel, because I didn't have fennel or dill but I had tarragon and it worked well.

I had to wing it, though, because where she was pickling two and a half pounds- I'd only cut off maybe six ounces to play with, so I really had to scale back the salt and sugar.

So for 6-8 ounces or so of fresh salmon, I mixed two teaspoons of pickling salt and two teaspoons of sugar.  I sprinkled half the salt/sugar mixture and half the chopped fresh tarragon on a large piece of plastic wrap.  Then I laid the fish over that and distributed the rest of the salt mixture and tarragon over the fish and then wrapped it up tightly.  It went on to a platter, and then I placed a dish on that to weight it slightly.  I turned it every twelve hours (okay, Steve turned it every twelve hours) for four days.  Then to serve it, I just rinsed it and sliced it really thin.

I want to get my hands on another fresh piece of salmon so I can do it again.