Making your own gravadlax is very simple to do and works out much cheaper than shop bought. Choose organic farmed salmon from a trusted fishmonger and ask him to skin and bone it for you
Serves: 8-10 as a starter. Prepare:30 minutes plus 36 hours marinating
- 1kg piece of salmon fillet, skinned
- 50g coarse sea salt (I like Maldon)
- 50g granulated sugar
- 4 tbsp gin or other white spirit
- a small bunch fresh dill, finely chopped
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
For the mustard dill sauce:
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 90ml sunflower oil
- 3 tbsp chopped fresh dill
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Place salmon in a shallow dish that fits it snugly. Mix sea salt, sugar, gin and chopped dill. Spread over salmon turning to cover both sides liberally.
- Cover surface of fish with crumpled greaseproof paper to keep out as much air as possible and cover dish tightly with cling wrap. Leave to marinate in fridge for 36-48 hours turning salmon every 12 hours. The flesh will firm up as the cure works on it.
- To make the mustard sauce, whisk together vinegar, egg yolk, mustard and sugar in a bowl. Gradually drip in oil, whisking continuously to give a thick emulsified sauce.
- Stir in half the dill and season to taste.
- Cover and chill until ready to use. (The sauce will keep for up to a week in the fridge).
- To serve, remove salmon from marinade and rinse under cold water to remove the marinade. Pat dry with kitchen paper.
- Mix lemon juice, mustard and remaining dill and brush over salmon.
- Slice thinly with a very sharp knife as you would smoked salmon. Serve with the mustard sauce and slices of rye bread.
Cook's tip: You can use the gravadlax for Christmas nibbles. Make tiny cheese scones (or buy mini blinis), split and top with a dollop of creme fraīche, little slices of the gravadlax and a spoonful of the sauce. Garnish with sprigs of dill (see right).
- recipes Mary Gwynn
- pictures David Merewether