Salmon Gravlax Recipe

Salmon Gravlax Recipe

Recently for both this blog and at home, I’ve been making a lot of Eastern dishes but now I really fancy eating something a little different. Also, there are so many really delicious and beautiful western dishes that I love to make, both professionally at work and at home, but haven’t had the opportunity to share. So, for this particular blog post, I decided to make salmon gravlax.

Salmon gravlax is a dish which originates from Norway during the Middle Ages. Fishermen used to salt the salmon then lightly ferment it by burying it in the sand. Gravlax’s literal translation is “grave”. Thanks to Wikipedia for this information and also inspiring me to draw a couple Vikings for this recipe.

Now this is probably going to sound really strange but even though I have made salmon gravlax many times professionally, I’ve never actually eaten it. I know this sounds really bizarre but probably because I’ve prepared it so many times I’ve kind of been put off it but my husband absolutely loves salmon gravlax so when I asked him if he fancies eating it, of course he said YES (with capital letters)!

I first learned how to make salon gravlax when I worked in a fine dining restaurant in Birmingham but after moving to Edinburgh I made it a few times while working in a hotel that I used to work in. Again I know it must sound strange that I haven’t tasted it before but as anyone who works as a chef knows, you barely even have time to have a glass of water or go to the toilet (this is one of the many reasons chef smoke – so they can have a cigarette break).

With this dish I combined two different recipes.

So what do I think? Interesting! It has a really unique mild herb and spice flavour with a little bit of a citrus taste. I have to say I like it very much and Chris gave me the big thumbs up. I liked it so much I used some of this salmon gravlax to make eggs royale (I’ve been absolutely crazy lusting after hollandaise sauce for nearly a year but couldn’t eat it because of the raw eggs which is obviously bad for unborn babies).

So I hope you enjoy my salmon gravlax recipe. It’s great to try a new dish and tick off one of the many hundreds of dishes out there that I want to try.

As there a really large number of preparation photos with this post, I haven’t included any new pictures of my daughter or any updates about her (she’s doing fine btw, she’s absolutely awesome) but in a few days I’ll post my recipe for eggs royale along with an update about her and some new photos.

Salmon Gravlax Recipe

Norweigan Salmon Gravlax recipe


450g fresh salmon with skin on
1 bunch fresh dill chopped
2 tablespoons sea salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon peppercorn toasted and crashed
1/2 lemon’s juice
1 lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander or fennel seed
2 tablespoons vodka



  1. Rinse salmon under cold running water and pat dry with kitchen napkins.
  2. Mix the sea salt, sugar, crashed peppercorn and ground coriander in a bowl evenly.
  3. Mix vodka and lemon juice together
  4. Lay couple sheets of cling film on a tray as procedure photo shown. Put salmon on the middle of tray.
  5. Pour vodka and lemon juice on salmon.
  6. Sprinkle lemon zest on the salmon first then sprinkle step 2 seasalt and spice mixture evenly on the salmon.
  7. Sprinkle chopped dill on the salmon and wrap salmon nice and tight with the cling film.
  8. Try to find something heavy put on top of salmon. I used 2 wooden boards on both side of salmon and wrap really tight to give it a bit of pressure to help it totally marinade.
  9. Leave it in the fridge for 3 days and take it out. Wash away the seasalt and herb. Slice very(!) thin to serve (you’ll need a really sharp knife for this)

Salmon Gravlax Ingredients

Salmon Gravlax

Salmon Gravlax

Salmon Gravlax

Salmon Gravlax

Salmon Gravlax

Salmon Gravlax

Salmon Gravlax

Salmon Gravlax

Salmon Gravlax

Salmon Gravlax


  1. How long does the gravlax last for and when you sliced it did you remove the skin first?

    Thanks for sharing!

  2. How long does the gravlax last for and when you sliced it did you remove the skin first?

    Thank you for sharing!

    • Hello Michelle,

      The salmon gravlax I made didn’t last very long time. The food in my household usually won’t last five minutes. lol But usually I will say only can store in fridge around three days.

      I sliced my salmon gravlax with skin on. The salmon meat that side face up and slice very thin from 45 degree angle and the meat will off the skin naturally. :)

  3. Wonderful instructions & beautiful pictures. I recently returned from a semester in Denmark and I’ve really missed Scandinavian-prepared fish/lox. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Hi Liv,

    Congrats on the Foodbuzz top 9! Your Gravlax looks heavenly. I’ve heard that Chefs can be turned off foods they prepare too often. But at least now you tried it. Glad to hear you baby is doing well:)

  5. I adore gravlax,or smoked salmon, either one. I grew up with Nova or some other type of smoked salmon. Didn’t have gravlax until many years later. It is so wonderful and so simple to put together.

    This looks so good I want some on a bagel right now.

  6. Love the photo style on your post. I love gravadlax, especially with some new potatoes and a bit of horseradish mayo!

  7. Hi Liv,
    Born and raised in Hong Kong, I have been in Canada for 40 years, and live in Toronto, its largest metropolis. I am not an adventurous chef, although I love smoked salmon and Gravlax. Your recipe is simple and the accompanying photographs taken by your hubbie are both colourful and an excellent visual aid. I made my first attempt, and it was successful. I brought the thinly sliced Gravlax to a Christmas get-together at my friend’s home last Saturday evening, and it received rave reviews, including those from a friend, whom I was not aware, has Scandinavian ancestry. Thank you Liv, and my very best wishes to you, your husband and your daughter Amelia.

    • Hi Julie,

      Thank you very much for your kind comment. I’m really happy that you and your friends enjoy my recipe and hopefully you will come back my blog very often in the future. Thanks again and all the best.



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