I absolutely agree with Nigel Slater (the talented and smart Nigel Slater, whose recipes I trust) when he names this beet-and-dill gravlax, “a jewel on a Christmas table.” This cured fish truly looks unreal – it is so beautiful, with its fifty shades of red.
This fantastic salmon must to be on my winter holiday feast. It looks so gorgeous and, with a hint of citrus and dill aroma, tastes so well balanced.
Serve this gravlax with thin slices of rye bread, whipped cream cheese, horseradish-and-sour cream sauce, crackers, butter… oh, I could continue…
Note: as I already mentioned in the Citrus Salmon recipe, this beet gravlax also can be made in advance and stored in a freezer. Cover the cured fish with a very thin layer of olive oil (by hand), wrap in heavy foil, put in a freezer zipper bag, and keep in the freezer. Remove from freezer about 2 hours before serving and thinly slice the fish while it is still slightly frozen.
In a bowl, mix well all the marinade ingredients.
Wash the fish with cold water and dry it with a paper towel.
Put the fish on a piece of food plastic wrap and cover all the sides with the marinade.
Tightly close the wrap. Transfer the packet into a tray or dish, top with a weight (a break covered with foil, a can, etc.). Marinate in a refrigerator for 20-24 hours.
Remove the fish from a refrigerator and then unwrap – there will be lots of juices in the packet. Wash the fish under running cold water and dry with a paper towel.
Thinly slice on a slight diagonal.
Serve with potato pancakes or blini, fresh bread and butter, toasts, whipped cream cheese, cream fresh, crackers, etc.
If the fish is saltier than you like, wash it under running cold water a little longer. Remember, that farm raised fish may absorb salt easier.
For an air-cured effect, store cured (beet marinated), washed and dried salmon uncovered on a tray with a rack in a refrigerator for 24 hours.
Cook with pleasure and enjoy the world!