Thursday, December 15, 2005

Gravlax... innit???

It is so expensive to make buy gravlax so why not make your own. It is very simple. First of all you need a nice bit of salmon. On offer in the shops at the moment at reasonable prices are farmed salmon from Norway or deep sea salmon from Ahvenamaa. I went for the salmon from the archipeligo.

raw salmon from the archipelego

To start the process you need to salt the fish and I use natural rock salt. It is big and it is cruchy and it looks good. It is enough to put a couple of table spoons on the salmon to coat the flesh.

Salmon salted with rock salt

After that the flesh is sprinkled with ordinary sugar. Just plain old sugar. I used sugar from estonia which I bought at a bargain price from Lidl. I was tempted to use some brown sugar from Suomen sokeri but thought better of it.

sugar added

Then it is time for some spices and I went for a mixture of rose pepper and Jamacian allspice. The recipe from the web called for crushed white pepper, but I did not have any so I went with the Rose pepper instead. It looks better with a little bit of red added to it.

Rose pepper and Jamacian allspice

Traditionally for some green you should go for dill, but I did not have any, but I did have some rosemary growing on the balcony so I chopped up some leaves and sprinkled it over the fish. It made a good contrast with the rose pepper.

Rosemary added

Finally the fillet is tightly wraped in cling film and place in the fridge for a couple of days to mature. The package is placed in a dish and then another dish is placed on top of it to weigh it down. You should expect some juices to come out of the fish fillet.

Wraped in cling film

In 48 hours time the fillet will be removed from the cling film and all of the remaining salt and sugar and herbs will be scraped off and the fillet sliced at 45 degrees to give very thin slices. It should be eaten with garlic mustard but I have decided to do gravlax con meloni.

If the Italians can get away with parma ham on melon, then I am going to be the first to put strips of gravlax with melon. I may even smother it in liqorice sauce. Eat your heart out fat duck.

P.S. Did I forget to mention that it was also marinated in Hunaja-Terva Snapsi (Honey-tar Schnapps)

1 comment:

Apprentice said...

I bought some very expensive and rather fatty farmed smoked salmon from Waitrose today, and ate the tiny amount on what felt like a couple of slivers of french bread.

Your recipe is much appreciated, I'm going to do it. Honey-tar schnapps, hmm? Would a drop of mead do? Probably not sticky enough?