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25 mins

Savage Salads
Cured salmon is a classic in Sweden. The curing process takes quite a bit of time, but the preparation is quick and easy. The beetroot stains the fish beautifully leaving it a deep around the edges, and the gin adds character.

Serves 4

Swedish or French mustard

Posted by Creative Publishing international Published See Creative Publishing international's 96 projects » © 2023 Kristina Gustafsson / Quarto · Reproduced with permission. · Recipes and images from Savage Salads: Fierce Flavours, Filling Power-Ups by Davide Del Gatto & Kristina Gustafsson, photography by Kim Lightbody. Published by Frances Lincoln (£16.99).
  • Step 1

    Grate the beetroot into a bowl and add the lemon zest, gin, rock salt and demerara sugar and mix well.

  • Step 2

    Place the salmon, skin-side down, on a large piece of clingfilm and cover the flesh side with the beetroot cure, pressing it into the flesh with the back of a spoon. Wrap the clingfilm around the fish tightly and leave in the fridge for 36 hours.

  • Step 3

    A couple of hours before you serve the salmon, heat the pickling spices in a small dry pan over a medium heat for 5 minutes, or until they smell aromatic.

  • Step 4

    Add the vinegar, sugar and a pinch of salt and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat, stir in 50ml/ 2fl oz/scant ¼ cup water and leave to cool. Once cool, add the chopped dill, sliced cucumber and a pinch of salt, and leave to stand for an hour or so.

  • Step 5

    Remove the salmon from the fridge and unwrap it. Scrape the beetroot cure carefully from the flesh and discard.

  • Step 6

    Carefully rinse any remaining cure from the fish under a slow running tap. Be careful not to drench it. Pat dry with kitchen paper and slice very thinly.

  • Step 7

    Divide the rye crispbread among serving plates, arrange the pickled cucumber on top, then the salmon, and finish with a sprinkle of cress.

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