Citrus-cured salmon gravadlax

Citrus-cured salmon gravadlax

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
(5 ratings)

Prep: 40 mins Plus curing


Serves 8-10 as a starter, more as part of a buffet
Gravadlax makes a stunning prepare-ahead starter or centrepiece for your New Year festivities

Nutrition and extra info


  • kcal271
  • fat19g
  • saturates8g
  • carbs5g
  • sugars5g
  • fibre1g
  • protein19g
  • salt3.61g
Save to My Good Food
Please sign in or register to save recipes.


  • 1 filleted side of very fresh salmon - weighing about 900g



    With its delicate, sweet flesh and wide availability, salmon is one of the most popular fish.…

  • very large bunch dill (about 80g)
  • 100g mixed baby salad leaves and extra virgin olive oil, to serve

For the salt mix

  • 250g Maldon sea salt
  • 375g demerara sugar
  • 4 star anise
    Star anise

    Star anise

    star an-eese

    Star anise is one of the central spices in Chinese cooking. It has a strong anise flavour, with…

  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
    Coriander seed

    Coriander seed

    kor-ee-and-er seed

    The small, creamy brown seeds of the coriander plant give dishes a warm, aromatic and slightly…

  • zest 3 oranges



    One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

  • zest 1 lime



    The same shape, but smaller than…

  • zest 1 lemon



    Oval in shape with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile…

For the horseradish creme fraiche

  • 100ml double cream
  • 100ml crème fraîche
  • 50g freshly grated horseradish or 85g creamed horseradish
    Horseradish root on a wooden chopping board


    hors rad-ish

    Horseradish root is larger than an ordinary radish, and has a hot, peppery flavour.


  • juice ½ lemon



    Oval in shape with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile…


  1. Tip all the ingredients for the salt mix into a food processor and whizz until everything is combined and the spices are completely ground.

  2. Stroke your hand along the salmon fillet to check for any stray bones. If you find any, pull them out with a pair of tweezers or small pliers.

  3. To skin the salmon fillet, lay the fish skin-side down with the tail end closest to you. Insert your knife at an angle at the tail end and cut through the flesh to the skin. Turn the blade so it’s almost flat against the skin, then take hold of the skin with the other hand. Pull and wiggle the skin towards you so as to cut the fillet away. Halfway through removing the skin, hold the knife firmly and flip the fillet over. Gently lift the fillet away from the skin and discard the skin. Trim away the thinner part, plus any fat around the edges, so that the fillet has an even shape.

  4. Scatter about a third of the salt mix onto a large tray in a line about the size of the salmon fillet. Lay the salmon, skinned-side down, over the salt and pack the rest of the salt on top. Cover with cling film, put another tray on top and weigh it down with a few cans or an empty casserole dish. Leave in the fridge overnight or for at least 10 hrs.

  5. Under cold running water, wash the salt mix off the salmon fillet, then dry with kitchen paper. Finely chop the dill. Lay the salmon on a board and cover with the dill, pressing it down to pack it onto the salmon.

  6. If serving as a plated starter, use a sharp carving knife to cut the salmon straight down into fine slices, allowing 6 slices for each plate.

  7. To make the horseradish cream, whisk together the cream and crème fraîche. Add the horseradish, lemon juice and seasoning, then continue to whisk until thick. Dress the salad leaves in a little olive oil. You are now ready to plate up.

  8. Arrange a neat pile of baby salad leaves in the centre of each plate. Curl slices of the salmon into bow shapes around the leaves. Continue all the way around the plate in a petal fashion. Use 2 teaspoons to make small quenelles of horseradish cream and spoon each into each bowl.

You may also like

Comments, questions and tips

Sign in or create your My Good Food account to join the discussion.
9th Sep, 2018
Superb recipe, works like a charm every time. I tend to leave it for around 24 hours as I like the firmer quality. The taste is wonderful, subtle and decisive at the same time. And very impressive at the dinner table!
22nd Mar, 2015
The texture was wonderful and the mild hit of citrus was very pleasant (though I think next time I will use more double the lemon and lime). Where it fell down for us was the star anise gave it far too strong an aniseed flavor, that for us overwhelmed the salmon. I thought about reducing it for next time but to be honest I think we will just omit it altogether. Otherwise it was beautiful, and the horseradish cream was surprisingly light and tasty. I whipped mine with an electric hand mixer for a few minutes, so that it got good and thick to make the quenelles. Also, I served mine as a main, with lightly toasted slices of ciabatta, a warm, citrus & dijon dressed potato salad, and a lightly pickled cucumber and radish salad. It made a fantastic dinner that I will make again throughout the summer!
5th Jan, 2014
I agree with previous post. This was a perfect starter for Christmas Day-my family loved it. I was a bit worried about the star anis but I followed the recipe carefully and it wasn't overpowering. The citrus flavours were fresh and the dill gave it a traditional look. It went beautifully with the horseradish cream, although I didn't manage to make quenelles! I will be making this again.
26th Dec, 2013
Made this for Christmas Day starter....wonderful. Will be making it again on a regular basis. Right amount of acidity, beautiful texture and flavour didn't over power the salmon. My guests liked it so much they asked for the recipe and ate it all...good job I made extra.
28th Dec, 2012
The Swedish Food Safety Authority has for quite a few years recommended freezing the salmon before or after curing (gravning) in order to kill any parasites in the fish. This recommendation has now been removed for cultivated salmon. They do still recommend it for wild fish and other fish than salmon. I have frozen the salmon for at least 48 hours and then thawed it very slowly since I first read about this.
26th Dec, 2012
Incredibly easy to prepare and so so so delicious! The final outcome is really top cuisine standard. I left it for two days as I wanted a smokier taste but I'll try it for one day next time around just to see the difference. I made half the amount suggested and it worked out great. One word of warning - don't be alarmed by the amount of water that comes out of the salmon into the tray after even just one day, it's quite normal.
28th Aug, 2010
wonderful recipe, i was amazed how relatively simple it was. I found the star aniseed lovely but dominant . the 2nd time i made it for a buffet i used fennel seeds and part smoked part normal maldon salt which turned out very nice.
Be the first to ask a question about this recipe...Unsure about the cooking time or want to swap an ingredient? Ask us your questions and we’ll try and help you as soon as possible. Or if you want to offer a solution to another user’s question, feel free to get involved...
Be the first to suggest a tip for this recipe...Got your own twist on this recipe? Or do you have suggestions for possible swaps and additions? We’d love to hear your ideas.
Want to receive regular food and recipe web notifications from us?