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Cured Salmon

Fernando Morales/The Globe and Mail

In her excellent book Around My French Table, Dorie Greenspan has a recipe for cured salmon that my daughter Emma successfully adapted to fit our seder table as an alternative to gefilte fish. This keeps for a week.

Servings: 6 to 8

Ready time: Ready in: two days, including marinating time


2 1/2 tbsp kosher salt or other coarse salt

2 tbsp sugar

1 one-pound salmon fillet, cut from the thickest portion of the fish, skinned

1 tbsp coriander seeds

1 tbsp black peppercorns

2 bay leaves, halved

8 thyme sprigs

1 large carrot, trimmed, peeled, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced

1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced

Olive oil to cover salmon

2 tsp grated lemon zest

3 tbsp lemon juice

Lemon or lime wedges, for serving


At least one day before serving: Stir the salt and sugar together in a bowl. Slice the salmon into 12 equal pieces (about two-inch pieces) and toss the pieces into the bowl, gently turning the salmon around to coat it evenly. (It’s easiest to use your hands for this.) Massage the salt and sugar in.

Layer the salmon snugly in a bowl or terrine, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 12 hours, or up to 24. You can also use 1/2 litre canning jars.

Remove salmon and rinse under cold water discarding any brine. Pat dry.

Repack the salmon into the bowl or terrine layering it with coriander seeds, peppercorns, bay leaves, thyme, carrot, onion, lemon zest and juice. Pour in enough of the olive oil to cover the ingredients and seal the bowl or cover the terrine tightly. Chill for at least six hours, or for up to a week.

Slice the salmon thinly and plate with some spicy lettuce or frisée and a little juice from the jar. Alternately, you can serve directly from the jars with lemon or lime wedges.

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