Friday, November 30, 2018

Beet and Aquavit-Cured Salmon


I have cured salmon before, but one day when we were at a robotics competition I saw someone curing salmon with beets. Sorry! No one was curing salmon at the robotics competition, but staying in a hotel is the only time I can watch the Food Network since we don't have any television stations at home! 

Now I can't remember who it was or what show it was on, but I loved the resulting color. So, I decided to give it a try myself. I simply adapted a previous salmon curing recipe that I love.


Ingredients

  • 1 C coarse sea salt
  • 1 C raw turbinado sugar
  • 1 t ground black pepper
  • 1 organic beet, finely grated
  • 3 springs fresh thyme
  • aquavit (a Scandinavian alcohol flavored with caraway seeds and star anise)
  • 2 pieces of wild-caught salmon, well matched in size and shape, if possible


Procedure
Mix the salt, sugar, pepper, and beets together. Divide into thirds. Spoon a third of the mixture onto a piece of plastic wrap and place one of the salmon pieces on top of it, skin-side down. Drizzle the salmon with aquavit and place fresh thyme on the fish. Mound another third of the salt-sugar-beet mixture onto the fish and place the other fillet on top. Finish by spooning the remaining salt-sugar-beet mixture over the top.

Wrap the salmon tightly with the plastic wrap. And place it in a glass container because it will weep through the duration of the curing process. Every twelve hours, flip the salmon. Do this for 2 to 3 days. The longer you let it cure, the more firm the fish will be.

Before serving, rinse the salt-sugar off with aquavit and cut as thinly as possible.


I served slices of the cured salmon on our salad for Thanksgiving: salad greens, thin slices of radish, raw corn kernels, pomegranate arils, blue cheese, and the salmon. It was colorfully festive and I can't wait to make another batch.

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