As we getting closer to Christmas here is a nice way to serve salmon: make your own home cured beetroot & vodka gravlax instead of buying it already smoked from the supermarket.
Curing your own salmon is much easier than you think. You do need to plan ahead, as the flavours need about two days to sink into the salmon properly, but it’s worth the wait and the deep fuchsia colour will make an impression on your table.
Do not hesitate, if you start it on Thursday, it will be ready for Saturday !
Prep time: 15 min / Resting time: 48 hours
2 large fresh beetroots, peeled and grated thinly
1 small fresh radish, grated thinly
the zest of 1 orange
the zest of 2 lemons
3 allspices, crushed
3 tablespoons crystal salt
1 tablespoons sugar
3 Tbsp. vodka
1 small bunch fresh dill, finely chopped
800 g side of salmon, from sustainable sources, ask your fishmonger
Mix all ingredients in a large bowl until combined.
Lay a large piece of cling film in a baking tray and place the salmon on top skin side down. Cover the salmon flesh with the dill and then scatter the beetroot-vodka mix all over. Once it is well covered, wrap up tightly with cling film, place a board on top and weigh it down with a few tins or something similar, to compress the salmon slightly.
Place in the fridge for 48 hours. After 24 hours empty the juice out of the tray and put back in the fridge.
When ready to serve, carefully unwrap the fish so you can rinse off the cure under gently running cold water (tap). The salmon should have a really vibrant colour. Remove the skin and simply slice the salmon as finely as you can on an angle so you get gorgeous thin slices of gravlax tinged with pink and topped with dill.
Arrange these onto a plate and serve with a sauce made of sour cream, dill and mustard, a couple of slices of buttered rye bread, together with some watercress salad.