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How To: Cure and Smoke Salmon

By Chuck Sudo in Food on Apr 20, 2010 4:00PM

Rick Tramonto has a new cookbook coming out next week. Steak With Friends compiles 150 recipes for entertaining friends in the backyard or in the kitchen. As a charcuterie enthusiast, one recipe that caught our eye was a for salmon pastrami with cucumber dill salad. Michael Ruhlman and Brian Polcyn have a few salmon curing recipe in Charcuterie, including one for salmon pastrami, and a quick search on epicurious for gravlax turns up some interesting recipes. But we never tried it. So we took the Tramonto recipe, then smoked it later.


3 lbs. salmon fillet
1 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup sugar (we used turbinado)
3 shallots, sliced
1 bunch parsley, chopped
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup black peppercorns
1/4 coriander seeds

Temperature control is essential when smoking, so as not to cook the meat or fish. What we wound up with wasn't pastrami — the salmon flaked as soon as a knife or fork touched it — but having a lot of smoked salmon around the house isn't a bad thing. The instructions for this recipe are listed with each photo, to give you some narrative. We're definitely going to try this again.