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My first attempt at gravlax/gravlox

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So my cure didn’t penetrate into the thicker parts of the fish enough, it’s still very fleshy.

closer to the tail, it’s cured beautifully and turned out very nice.

i am toying with the idea of maybe curing it again, scoring the skin side maybe so I can get the cure coming in from the back side as well.

Or I might just cook the parts that didn’t cure fully.

next time I’ll up the cure amount I think and use the vacuum sealer. I used plastic wrap for this, because I was too lazy to go down and get the vacuum, but next time I’ll just do it. I’m thinking it should also help the curing process

not terrible for my first go at it
 
Great! Use the size of the tail as a reference for curing time. We tend to leave it curing not touching the liquid, and as long as it takes for the flesh to feel firm. So I am no help in terms of timing here. It's like when I was trying to explain to someone how I make pasta and the goal is to get it to feel like baby bum. ?
 
Great! Use the size of the tail as a reference for curing time. We tend to leave it curing not touching the liquid, and as long as it takes for the flesh to feel firm. So I am no help in terms of timing here. It's like when I was trying to explain to someone how I make pasta and the goal is to get it to feel like baby bum. ?
? Haha.

I think that the compression from the vacuum will help the cure.

basically I went against all my instincts and followed a recipe, and that ended up with a so so result.

lessons learned, I still have some edible smoked salmon and some other salmon meat I can cook and eat as well, so at least it’s going to be a 100% edible mistake.

thank you all for your interest and input!
 
How did I miss this entire thread?!?!? We were going to make a cold-smoked salmon for Xmas this year but we ended up doing warm smoked due to time, but this is how we were planning:

Cure "mix" is as simple as salt with 1tsp sugar mixed in, liberally coat the fish (dry rub). If you want, some rosé pepper mixed in adds a nice touch. Leave in the fridge under a heavy textbook with somewhere for the fluid to drain for 10-24h.

Smoking is best done hanging vertically (putting a twine loop through the tail is a "traditional" way to get it to stay, another option is hammering the fish to a board but that's more commonly used for a different kind of smoking style). Hardcore enthusiasts use a fridge with a smoking grate inside, the fridge compressor is thermoregulated from the outside so the temperature always stays under 30c (basically, your fish should be "cooked" (think ceviche for example) before you apply the smoke). Birch is a commonly used wood, but I think apple also adds a nice soft aroma.

We did a horizontal smoke on the weber with hickory, as mentioned we did warm smoked but same idea. For cold smoking, 8-10h is a "moderate smoked flavor" amount of time, less gets you more on the gravlax end of things and more time gets you more smoke flavor obviously.

Note: gravlax itself is not necessarily smoked, once the salmon finishes curing in the fridge it is thinly sliced and often rolled into "rosettes" for presentation, and sprinkled with dill. Cold smoked "gravlax" same thing, except you obviously slice after smoking. Keeps for 1-3 days in the fridge after being sliced.

Note #2: for obvious reasons, authentic cold smoking can really only be successful during the non-summer months, since keeping the temperature low enough is the main trick to getting the texture of the fish correct. My hubby (this was his first time smoking fish outside in winter) made a comment that he would have originally thought that what we did (warm smoked) would have been called "cold smoking" because it is a cooler temperature than what he would have done a pork butt in the summer for example, so temperature is a common misconception for proper cold-smoking.

Source: I'm an immigrant, been eating the stuff my whole life :D
 
? Haha.

I think that the compression from the vacuum will help the cure.

basically I went against all my instincts and followed a recipe, and that ended up with a so so result.

lessons learned, I still have some edible smoked salmon and some other salmon meat I can cook and eat as well, so at least it’s going to be a 100% edible mistake.

thank you all for your interest and input!
That is why I drive my husband's family bananas. I do not follow recipes, just do what feels right. How about a risotto with thin slices of the salmon cooking as is being served?
 
Also @eatyourpeas that cardamom sauce sounds to die for. Recipe?
Take butter, lots of butter, brown it. Turn the pan off and put the cardamon pods in to sizzle with the heat of the liquid (use crushed green pods, the dark pods are a bit more resilient and will not release the flavour as easily). Then pour it over the ravioli. The brown butter nuttiness is hard to beat. You could slash a little bit of fresh cream just to prove you can be as decadent as possible, if there is such a thing. Salt and pepper to taste. Buon appetito!
 
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That is why I drive my husband's family bananas. I do not follow recipes, just do what feels right. How about a risotto with thin slices of the salmon cooking as is being served?
Hahaha, yea, experimental cooking will drive some people nuts.

thankfully my wife is also a former chef, so she approves of my experiments.
As for the risotto, I’m not sure I’m catching your drift on that one...

Are you suggesting adding the salmon as the risotto is finishing the cooking? Either way I’m game to try it, although my wife is not a huge fan of the dish, especially because I made a hot dog risotto at work one day, which nearly cost me me marriage... ? that can be a story for another day...
 
Hahaha, yea, experimental cooking will drive some people nuts.

thankfully my wife is also a former chef, so she approves of my experiments.
As for the risotto, I’m not sure I’m catching your drift on that one...

Are you suggesting adding the salmon as the risotto is finishing the cooking? Either way I’m game to try it, although my wife is not a huge fan of the dish, especially because I made a hot dog risotto at work one day, which nearly cost me me marriage... ? that can be a story for another day...
:sick:
 
image.jpg

This is a quick view of how the tail end turned out. It’s delicious. Nicely cured, and as I mentioned,only the thicker parts of the fillet didn’t cure all the way through, but I am stunned at how well the taste and texture turned out on the thin sections
 
Hahaha, yea, experimental cooking will drive some people nuts.

thankfully my wife is also a former chef, so she approves of my experiments.
As for the risotto, I’m not sure I’m catching your drift on that one...

Are you suggesting adding the salmon as the risotto is finishing the cooking? Either way I’m game to try it, although my wife is not a huge fan of the dish, especially because I made a hot dog risotto at work one day, which nearly cost me me marriage... ? that can be a story for another day...
No, just before serving. Let the steam of the risotto warm the salmon, top with a dill butter and salt of cured capers. A nice Sancerre or something like that. I don't know. I do not want to be responsible for the success of your marriage :rolleyes:
 
View attachment 127460
This is a quick view of how the tail end turned out. It’s delicious. Nicely cured, and as I mentioned,only the thicker parts of the fillet didn’t cure all the way through, but I am stunned at how well the taste and texture turned out on the thin sections
Yes, you are on the right track! I think if you cure outside of the liquid you'll get the mixture to penetrate the flesh a bit more effectively.
 

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