Recipe courtesy of Chef Bren Ankrum – Culinary Editor
A couple of times during the year here in Florida we can obtain wild caught, never frozen, fresh Sockeye Salmon which we consider a real treat. If you’re a fan of bagels, cream cheese and lox, this very simple and easy recipe for creating your own salt cured salmon is one you’ll want to add to your recipe files. The cured salty and slightly spicy salmon works well in combination with cheeses, especially mozzarella, and can be sliced super thin for a carpaccio with olive oil appetizer. Add it to pizza or any other culinary treat you may dream up.
From time to time we publish recipes that on the surface, may not traditionally be considered “healthy”. However, there is one common theme; they are made fresh, with whole foods that taken individually are superior to any “processed” product. We present recipes in the same mind set for many reasons. One, the recipe is considered to be delicious. Two, it is meant for an occasional meal and not something you would eat every day or a lot of at any one sitting. Three, it is made with whole, fresh ingredients. So the point is, if you what a great entrée/snack/breakfast/desert and feel like being a little adventuresome, make it yourself, indulge and be proud of it!
PS – Any of our recipes may be altered by substituting or removing ingredients for dietary or preference reasons. If you have an aversion or need to reduce salt intake, for example reduce it or leave it out. Recipes are guidelines not written in stone. If you don’t like beets for example, substitute another root crop that you do like.
Our goal is to explore the world of whole foods and their delicious combinations and encourage everyone to join their own exploration while avoiding the health risks which may be associated with faux foods, artificial ingredients, and chemically altered food sources.
We hope cooking will become a fun and rewarding pass time for you and yours!
Equipment/ utensils required:
Chef’s knife, cutting board, mixing bowl, clear wrap, covered container with rack.
2 lbs. Sockeye Salmon filets, fresh, never frozen.
2 cups Kosher Salt
2 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp. mustard seeds
2 tbsp. crushed red chile pepper flakes
1. Remove all skin and silver skin from the fillet(s) and cut into two similar size pieces.
2. Wash thoroughly and pat dry with paper towels.
3. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl.
4. Press one side of a filet down into the salt cure and then place, salted side down, on to a sheet of clear plastic wrap. Coat the other side with a layer of the cure. Place the second filet on top of the first then layer the cure on top and sides of the stacked filets.
5. Seal the salmon in two layers of the cling or clear wrap with folded sealing sides for both layers of clear wrap on the same side and place with that side down on a rack or other support which fits in a pan or container and seal the entire container with foil or clear wrap. As the salmon cures under refrigerator some of the liquid removed by the cure will exit the wrapping at the bottom and drip into the container, so be sure to have the wrapped fish elevated above the bottom of the pan or container so that it does not have to sit in the liquid.
6. Leave the salmon wrapped in the refrigerator for 72 hours minimum, remove, discard the wrap, knock off the layer of salt cure, rinse quickly under cold water, pat super dry with paper towels and place each slab of cured salmon into a sealed container or zip bag and store under refrigeration. Be sure your containers or bags are air tight so that the cured salmon will not gather moisture while in the fridge.
Makes about 1 ¼ to 1 ½ lbs. cured salmon