Gravad Salmon Trout
by Jens Ambsdorf, from the Lighthouse Foundation, Germany
1. The Fish
- common name: Trout
- scientific name: The name trout is commonly used for some species in three of the seven genera in the subfamily Salmoninae; Oncorhynchus and Salvelinus.
- characteristics: Trout is the most common freshwater fish on German menus, although pike, carp, and European perch are also frequently served. Seafood was traditionally restricted to the northern coastal areas — except for pickled herring. Today many seafish are well established throughout the country. Prior to the industrial revolution and the ensuing pollution of the rivers, however, salmon was very common in the rivers Rhine, Elbe, and Oder. Nowadays, thanks to tight environmental control, rivers are cleaner than they were a century ago and the fish population of Germany's rivers is gaining back its territory. France and Germany consume nearly two-thirds of all smoked trout in the EU.
2. The Recipe
2 salmon trout filets with skin (500 g each)
150 g sea salt
150 g brown cane sugar
10 sprigs of dill, freshly chopped
2 sprigs of dill, to garnish
1. Clean the filets by removing any remaining bones and rinsing it with cold water. Pat dry.
2. Place the filets skin-side down in wrapping/ cling film.
3. Apply a mixture of the salt and sugar on top of the filets.
4. Cover this mixture with a 1 cm thick layer of dill. Now fold the two halves together.
5. Wrap the entire fish with foil thoroughly and place in a large vessel or casserole.
6. Place a plastic bag with 3 kg of sand on top of the fish to weigh it down.
7. Store the dish in a cool place (such as a cellar) for two days (48 hours).
8. Ensure that the fish is turned once every 12 hours so that the weight is applied evenly.
9. Before serving, rinse the filets briefly to remove any excess salt. Dry it and garnish with some fresh dill.
10. Cut into thin slices starting from the tail and serve.