It comes as no surprise that salmon is one of the first foods we think of when it comes to Norse cuisine. Norwegian smoked salmon is one of the most popular and valuable food exports from the region to the rest of the world. Another salmon product introduced to the world – and one far easier to make at home – is gravlaks. Quite literally translated as buried salmon, gravlaks is made by curing the fish in a mixture of salt, sugar, and dill. Simple, delicious, and rich in flavour – in just a day, you’ll have a delicious dish, ready to serve at your next party (or on a bagel with cream cheese). Enjoy!
• 1 kg filet of salmon, skin on, pin bones removed
• 1 cup kosher salt
• ½ cup brown sugar
• ½ cup white sugar
• 2 tbsp black peppercorns, cracked
• 1 bunch fresh dill, roughly chopped
1. Mix the salt, sugars, and peppercorns. Lay half in a deep dish, followed by half of the dill.
2. Place the filet of salmon over it, skin side down.
3. Cover the flesh of the salmon with the rest of the salt mixture and dill, effectively burying it in the mix.
4. Cover with plastic wrap, then put a weight onto the salmon (such as a smaller glass dish or pan).
5. Refrigerate the salmon for 24-36 hours, flipping the filet every 12 hours. If there is any runoff juice, baste the salmon with it.
6. After that time, you will see that the cure has worked its way into the salmon, “cooking” it and causing the flesh to go opaque.
7. Traditionally, the salt and herbs are simply scraped off of the fish, and the flesh is then sliced thinly before serving. Alternatively, you may wish to rinse the salt and dill mixture off and pat the filet dry.
8. Serve with crackers as a canapé, or more traditionally, with boiled potatoes and mustard dill sauce.