The miracle of Hanukkah began when a single evening’s allotment of olive oil kept temple candles burning for eight nights. Over two millennia later, this holiday is still very much centered around miraculous food, whether it’s your Bubbe’s tender beef brisket or crispy fried latkes.
With its nuanced, buttery flavor, salmon has become a popular and beloved Hanukkah staple. This fish can be served as a main entrée or as an irresistible garnish on latkes. With this delicious recipe, you will love how easy preparing sashimi-grade gravlax for your guests can be: after the salmon has cured to your taste, plate it with creamy mustard sauce and enjoy this festival of lights.
1 cup freshly chopped dill
2 teaspoon black ground pepper
8 ounces rock salt OR 8 oz kosher salt*
8 ounces white sugar
2 pounds boneless sashimi-grade salmon, skin on
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons mustard powder
1/3 cup dijon mustard
Salt and pepper
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Blend rock salt, sugar, pepper, and dill together.
Place two pieces of cling film on a countertop with one slightly overlapping the other. Spread half the mixture to cover the anticipated shape of your salmon.
Place the salmon on top of the mixture.
Spread the remainder of the mixture on top of the salmon.
Wrap the salmon completely in the cling film. Place a flat weight, such as a dinner plate or platter, on top of the cling film. The weight should be distributed evenly across the salmon.
Refrigerate for 12 hours. Remove and flip the salmon over. Place the flat weight back on top and refrigerate for another 12 hours. Repeat this process for a third time. After 36 hours of refrigeration have elapsed, the salmon will have reached a medium cure (which is still somewhat moist). For a hard cure (the fish will be jerky-like), flip the salmon over three more times and refrigerate for a total of 72 hours. *For those substituting kosher salt, a medium cure will be reached within 24 hours, while a hard cure will be reached within 36 hours.
Remove the salmon from the fridge and scrape off the salt. Pat dry. Refrigerate for an additional 3-12 hours to allow for fuller flavor. Remove and add additional dill.
At an angle, slice the fish thinly. Serve skin side down (do not eat the skin) with toasted bread and mustard sauce.
Mix the heavy cream, salt and pepper to taste, mustard powder, and dijon mustard into a creamy sauce. Add lemon juice and serve in a ramekin.