A delicious, fancy (but also very simple) recipe for gin cured salmon. This makes a great starter if you’re really wanting to impress!
You will need:
- 1 large salmon fillet preferably wild or organic (this is also suitable for sea trout or a large trout) about 1-2kg
- 4 tsp coarse sea salt
- 4 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp chopped dill
- 2 tbsp black peppercorns, crushed
- 3 tbsp gin
- 2 lemons, grated zest only
These quantities should be increased proportionately according to the size of your fish. Fish too big to fit in the fridge can be cured in a cool cellar or outhouse (provided it never exceeds 6C).
Roughly chop the dill and mix thoroughly in a bowl with the rest of the ingredients . Lay out a sheet of foil or cling film about four times the width of a salmon fillet.
Spread a quarter of the pickling mix over a fillet-size area on one side of the foil with a good 15cm/6in margin for folding over.
Place one fillet, skin side down, on top of the pickle mixture and cover with slightly more than half of what is left. Place the second fillet on top, skin side up, to make a sandwich. Scatter the remaining pickle mixture over the skin.
Wrap up the parcel tightly, tucking the ends and edges in underneath the fish.
Put the package on the tray and place a similar size tray, or a plank of wood on the top. Weight it down, with a brick or two or anything else handy (the contents of the fridge?).
Turn the package daily for at least five days, and no more than eight. Do not discard the pickling liquid that oozes from the package unless it threatens to spill over the side of the tray.
To serve, unwrap the gravadlax and wipe off any excess pickling liquid. There is no need to scrape off the dill pieces though.
Slice fairly (but not too) thinly then serve with dill & mustard sauce and buttered brown bread. (Unused gravadlax can be re-wrapped in clean cling film or foil and kept in the fridge for up to five days.)