This week’s recipe comes from Karen Pontius, owner of the Suttons Bay Trading Company. Gravlax, typically served as an appetizer, is made by salt curing salmon.
1 c. coarse sea salt
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 T. Juniper Berries
2 T. black peppercorns, crushed
3 bunches fresh dill
21/2 lbs. salmon fillet, boned and with skin on (this is 1 side of a whole salmon)
1/4 c. gin
lemon wedges, to serve
1 c. crème
2 T. salt
2 T. cornichons
1 T. salted capers
finely grated zest and freshly squeezed juice of one un-waxed lemon
You will need a baking sheet or shallow pan that you can place the salmon in. Line the bottom with plastic wrap. Crush the black peppercorns and juniper berries with a mortar and pestle.
Mix together in a bowl: salt, brown sugar and peppercorn/juniper berries mixture. Sprinkle half of the salt mixture on top of the lined baking sheet or pan and spread one bunch of dill over the salt mixture. Place the salmon (skin side down) on the pan of seasonings and dill and then drizzle with the gin. Cover the salmon with the remainder of the salt mixture and then top with the remaining dill.
Cover the salmon with plastic wrap and make sue it is airtight. Weight the salmon with a heavy saucepan and put in the refrigerator overnight to cure for approximately 12 hours.
To make the caper sauce, put all of the ingredients in a food processor and rough chop them. Place in a bowl, cover and refrigerate.
Unwrap the salmon and remove the dill. Place the salmon on a wooden board and scrape off the salt mixture with the back of a knife.
To serve, cut the salmon as thin as possible diagonally. Serve with the caper sauce, lemon wedges and baguette.
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