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The Scandinavian Cookbook
by Trina Hahnemann
I love salmon, and this is the perfect way to eat it: cured in sugar and salt, then served with a mustard sauce (called fox sauce) and fresh dill, with an ice-cold beer alongside.
Serves 8 to 10
• 1 (5½-pound) salmon fillet
• 2 tablespoons peppercorns
• 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
• 4½ ounces coarse salt
• 1 cup superfine sugar
• 2 bunches fresh dill, minced very finely, plus 6 sprigs extra
• 3 tablespoons brown sugar
• 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
• 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
• 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
• 1 bunch fresh dill, chopped
FREEZE the salmon for 24 hours before making the gravlax to ensure there are no harmful bacteria, then thaw.
REMOVE any pin-bones from the salmon and trim the edges of the fillet. Wipe off any scales with a paper towel and lay the salmon skin-side down on a sheet of plastic wrap.
CRUSH the peppercorns and coriander seeds using a mortar and pestle and mix with the salt and sugar. Spread the minced dill evenly over the salmon, then cover with the spiced sugar mixture. Cut the salmon into 2 equal portions. Lay 3 of the dill sprigs over one piece then cover with the other piece of fish, laying it flesh-side down. Wrap in plastic wrap and let stand for 2 days in the refrigerator.
MAKE the sauce. Place all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and process until the mixture is smooth.
TO SERVE, Unwrap the salmon and wipe off all the salt and sugar mixture with a paper towel. The traditional cut starts diagonally at one corner of the salmon, and then works back toward the center of the fillet. Place the gravlax on a serving dish and garnish with the remaining dill sprigs. Serve with the honey mustard sauce and white or spelt bread.
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