I wasn’t kidding about wishing that people come to visit you bearing cured meats. I really do wish that for you, because it’s such a great thing. And my mom is getting in on the whole curing thing, which just makes me happy. My family generally shows up bearing baked goods, which are always welcome (so keep them coming too!), but to bring something that takes several days to put together takes a bit more planning. And hey, if it relies on centuries-old traditions of adding salt and spices in order to transform raw fish into something delicious to put on a bagel, well, that’s just a little more special. When the family came for a recent visit over the holiday, mom brought some home-cured gravlax that she made this year for Christmas morning. We’re not even Scandinavian, but I think we might have a new family tradition.
Gravlax – recipe from family friends, the DiDios
1/2 cup non-iodized/kosher salt
1/2 cup sugar
bunch of fresh dill
juniper berries (optional)
Mix sugar and salt together
Cut salmon in half lengthwise, pour salt and sugar mixture over meat side
Crush dill and put on each half
Soak both sides with lemon
Sandwich the halves together with skin on the outside
Wrap in plastic wrap and then foil, or put into a ziploc bag
Place in refrigerator and place a weight on top (it can be helpful to put the salmon package into a baking dish or casserole in case of leakage)
Refrigerate for 3 days, flipping the fish over every 12 hours
Before serving scrape off all remaining ingredients, rinse, pat dry, slice thin to serve.