Andrew's Salmon Gravlax

An old Nordic tradition, gravlax is a type of cured salmon. It is an excellent way to serve wild Alaskan salmon at your holiday parties.

I prefer to use Sockeye salmon for this. If you use tail pieces, you can eliminate the work of removing the pin bones.

2T Organic Sugar or Fructose
3T Sea Salt
4 or 5 Whole Star Anise
12 Black Peppercorns
About 2 lbs of fresh wild Alaskan salmon fillets, pin bones removed
Chopped Fennel Fronds (about 2 C)
1 or 2 Lemons, very thinly sliced
2T Vodka
Put the sugar or fructose, sea salt, star anise and black peppercorns in a spice mill (a coffee grinder, dedicated to spices) and process until homogeneous.

Arrange the lemon slices in a shallow glass baking dish, large enough that you can lay the fish in it flat.

Sprinkle the chopped fennel fronds over the lemon slices.

Wash the salmon fillets and pat them dry with a towel or paper towels. Rub both sides of the salmon fillets with the spice mixture.

Sprinkle the flesh sides of the fillets with the vodka.

Place the salmon fillets, flesh side down, on the lemon slices and fennel fronds in the baking dish.
salmon fillets in the baking dish

Cover the fillets with plastic wrap.
cover salmon fillets with plastic wrap

Place a heavy wooden cutting board or marble cheese board over the fillets to distribute pressure evenly and, weight down.
marble cheese board
weight the salmon fillets

Put this assembly in the refrigerator and leave it for 2 or three days.

After the salmon has cured, remove the fillets, wipe off excess spice rub and fennel bits. Using a very sharp knife, cut thin slices down at an angle towards the skin.
slicing the gravlax

Serve with crackers, thinly-sliced fennel bulb and goat chevre.
finished gravlax

Andrew Crawford