Gravadlax and Dill Mustard Sauce from Mary Kemp


This is a classic recipe for cured salmon that is so expensive to buy ready-cured. It is not difficult to do, freezes well and will keep in the fridge for a good five days. It makes a great change to smoked salmon and home cured tastes so much better than any you will buy. You can make it at the beginning of December and leave it in the freezer until you want to use it – another job ticked off the list. It is lovely served on brown bread as canap�s, spreading the bread with the dill sauce, as opposed to using butter.



1 x 1.8kg (4lb) whole fresh salmon, ask your fishmonger to fillet, de-head and pin bone it for you whilst leaving the skin on, giving you two sides of salmon.

Pickling ingredients:4tbsp dried dill4tbsp golden caster sugar2tbsp Malden saltLots of freshly ground pepper

1 Place the sides of salmon skin side down on a large piece of tin foil, opening the fillets out like a book. Check down the middle of each fillet for any remaining pin bones. These need removing; the best way is with a pair   of tweezers. 2 Mix all the pickling ingredients together in a bowl, then carefully spoon this mixture over each fillet, pressing it down using the palm of your hand.3 Very carefully fold one fillet on top of the other and wrap them up tightly together in the tin foil. Then wrap this in clingfilm and lay on a large dish or tray. Make sure you wrap it well so you don’t end up with any sticky marinade at the bottom of the fridge.4 Slide the tray into the fridge and lay something heavy on the top (it can be baked bean tins or kitchen weights), leave for three to four days turning every 12 hours.5 After a minimum of three days unwrap the salmon. Be careful as there will be lots of sticky liquid. Remove the fish from the tin foil and separate the fillets. If I am not feeding lots of people, I will use one side and freeze the other.6 To serve, slice the fillets at an angle. The slices should be slightly thicker than smoked salmon and edged with dill. Serve two or three slices per person with a drizzle of mustard dill sauce and some fresh, brown bread. Garnish with pretty leaves and a slice of lemon.

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The Dill Mustard Sauce


3tbsp Dijon mustard2tbsp caster sugar1tbsp white wine vinegar1 egg yolk150ml (�pt) sunflower oil2tbsp fresh dill finely chopped Salt and freshly ground pepper

1 Whisk the egg yolk, mustard, sugar and vinegar together until smooth. Slowly mix in the oil a little at a time; just as you would if you were making a mayonnaise. Once the  oil is combined and the sauce is quite thick, add the salt and pepper to taste then add the dill.2 If you are worried about serving raw egg you can use a good quality mayonnaise and add the Dijon and dill.3 If you run out of time and want to use a cheat’s sauce, mix some honey and mustard dressing with dill and some decent mayonnaise – it won’t be as good as the home-made sauce but, sometimes, needs must.