Salmon Gravlax

This simple and delicious cured salmon is actually halfway between sushi and a traditional salt and sugar–cured gravlax. If you prefer your salmon on the sushi side, you can dine on this within 3 or 4 hours of preparation. For a firmer, gravlax-like texture and flavor, give it a 24-hour cure. We enjoy this dish with crispy, golden Potato and Parmesan Galettes, and it also comes in handy as a quick and easy appetizer: arrange thin slices of the gravlax on Tortilla Chips. I love the hit of white pepper here, a distinctive flavor with the right level of pungency.



Two 12-ounce salmon fillets, skin intact
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh dill leaves
3 tablespoons coarse sea salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon coarse, freshly ground white pepper
1 recipe Potato and Parmesan Galettes (recipe follows)

1. Run your fingers over the top of the salmon fillets to detect any tiny bones that remain. Use tweezers to remove the bones.

2. In a small bowl, combine the dill, salt, sugar, and pepper. Sprinkle this over the salmon fillets. Place the fillets flesh to flesh and wrap securely in several layers of plastic wrap. Place on a platter. Cover with a brick or heavy cutting board and refrigerate for at least 3 hours and up to 2 days, turning every 12 hours and discarding any excess liquid.

3. Remove the salmon from the marinade, and with the sharp, flexible knife, cut into paper-thin slices. Serve with the galettes.


Potato and Parmesan Galettes

Many an evening we prepare these golden, tasty potato galettes for dinner, ready to accompany a lush green salad and a few slices of home-cured gravlax or smoked salmon. The touch of Parmesan adds richness and color as well as texture.



1 pound yellow-fleshed potatoes (such as Yukon Gold), peeled
2 large eggs
3 tablespoons whole wheat flour
2 tablespoons minced fresh chives
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Fine sea salt
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
Capers in Vinegar, drained, for garnish
Fresh dill sprigs, for garnish

1. Using the largest holes of the box grater, coarsely grate the potatoes. Wrap the potatoes in a thick kitchen towel, pressing hard to extract all the liquid and to completely dry them.

2. Break the eggs into a large bowl and beat lightly. Add the flour, chives, cheese, and 1 teaspoon salt. Whisk to blend. Add the potatoes and stir to coat them evenly with the egg mixture.

3. Warm the crepe pan for a few seconds over high heat. Then add the oil and heat until it is hot but not smoking. Reduce to moderate heat. Drop one-fourth of the potato mixture into the pan and flatten it with the spatula to form an even galette, about 4 inches in diameter. Cook on one side until crisp and golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the galette and cook on the other side until crisp and golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Serve warm, garnished with capers and fresh dill.


- Recipes courtesy of "Salad as a Meal" by Patricia Wells.  ©2011 Patricia Wells. Published by HarperCollins. All  Rights Reserved.