• Level
  • Serves
  • Time
    30 mins + 48 to 72 hours curing time

The classic gravadlax technique is to use equal quantities of salt, sugar, and dill but I like to up the dill ratio a little as I find it gives a more aromatic finish. I also add coriander seed and black peppercorns to give depth of flavour.


The one rule I always follow is do not use supermarket salmon unless you’re prepared to freeze it first. Gravadlax is a curing technique that draws moisture from the fish, prolonging its shelf life. Very fresh, high quality salmon can be cured straight away, but supermarket-bought pre-packed salmon may have been packaged for a number of days before it gets to you, so it MUST be frozen for at least 36 hours in order to kill any parasites that may be present. Once frozen solid, remove the fish from the freezer and allow it to defrost, covered, in a refrigerator.


The gravadlax can be made with orange, lemon, or grapefruit zest in the curing mix to add a citrus note to the finished dish. Or finely chopped beetroot, which gives a wonderful deep red colour to the salmon.


The recipe given will produce enough curing mixture for 2 x 150g (approx.) fillets. If making a whole gravadlax salmon, triple the quantities given.

  • Method :
  • 1. Ensure that the salmon is clean and dry. De-scaled, but with the skin remaining.


    2. Place all of the ingredients apart from the dill in a pestle and mortar, and grind to a relatively fine mixture.


    3. Chop the dill quite finely, but reserve 3-4 whole pieces.


    4. Place the salmon fillets skin-side-down on a piece of cling film and divide the chopped dill between them, spreading a thick layer over the flesh of each fillet.


    5. Next, divide the curing mix between the two fillets and spread that over the top of the dill, patting it down to gain a thick crust.


    6. Place the whole dill frongs on top of one of the fillets and carefully flip that fillet over, placing it sandwich-like on top of the other fillet.


    7. Wrap the sandwiched fillets tightly in cling film and place the package in a bowl. Refrigerate for 48 to 72 hours.


    8. To serve, unwrap the gravadlax and separate the fillets. Gently scrape off most of the curing mixture, leaving a little of the dill layer on top of each fillet for presentation purposes. There will be a good amount of liquid present in the bowl where the moisture has been leached from the salmon. With the fillets skin-side-down, carefully cut thin slices from each using a sharp knife. The flesh will feel firm and appear semi-translucent.


    Serving suggestions:


    Serve with sweet mustard and dill sauce (equal quantities of Dijon mustard, muscovado sugar, cider or white wine vinegar, and honey, a little oil, and a large handful of dill in a blender - et voila!)