Making homemade gravlax is easy. It's one of those great recipes that impresses guests, looks beautiful, requires zero cooking, and takes minutes to make. Heads up: while this recipe is easy, you need to prepare it 3 days in advance.
The beets create a lovely deep scarlet color on the top layer of the fish, and they add a very subtle sweet, earthy, flavor.
Like any simple dish, the quality of the ingredients are critical to the success of the recipe. Start with excellent, fresh, wild-caught salmon.
I love to serve this thinly sliced on a platter with fresh veggies. Bagels and cream cheese are always welcome accompaniments for cured fish. Enjoy!
Beet Cured Gravlax
1 3 lb salmon filet
1 lb red beets, peeled and grated, any juice included
1 large bunch dill, roughly chopped
Zest of 1 large orange
Zest of 2 lemons
1 cup tablespoon plus 2 tablespoons kosher salt
½ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup freshly cracked black pepper
In a food processor or with a box grater, grate the beets. In a bowl, combine the beets with orange and lemon zest, chopped dill, and 2 tablespoons salt.
In a small bowl combine the remaining 1 cup salt, sugar, and pepper.
In a non-metal dish (pyrex or ceramic), place a large piece of plastic wrap on the bottom (big enough to cover the fish). Firmly rub the salt mixture onto both sides of the salmon. Then place the salmon skin side down onto the plastic wrap. Place the beet mixture on top of the salmon. Tightly wrap the salmon in the plastic wrap. Place another pan/dish on top of the salmon and weigh it down with canned goods or weights.
Cure in the fridge for 3 days. After 3 days, scrape off the beet mixture and discard.
Serve thinly sliced. Salmon will keep wrapped tightly in the fridge for up to one week.