Fennel Pollen Cured Salmon

So Instacart delivered 5 bunches of bananas instead of one bunch of 5, and forgot the fresh dill?  No worries if you have fennel pollen on hand. Fennel pollen is one of those chefs’ secrets. It’s expensive, packs a flavor wallop, lasts a long time and a little goes a very long way!  You can use it on vegetables; cooked and raw, as a dry marinade for chicken and beef, sprinkled into pasta sauce, to enhance ground pork sausages & stuffings and I particularly like the way it pairs with roasted tomatoes. This recipe is for cured salmon, and most of the work is hands off.

Recipe by Lynn Bernstein

Ingredients

2lbs raw organic salmon fillet, skin on (fattier is better)
2 big pinches fennel pollen
1/3 cup kosher salt
1/3 cup sugar (either white or unbleached)
2 tsp peppercorns

Instructions

• Remove any pin bones from the raw salmon fillet, then coat both sides with a light dusting of fennel pollen.

• Place half of the sugar, salt, and peppercorns (ideally a mix, tellicherry, muntok, kampot, etc.), on a sheet of plastic wrap over a piece of aluminum foil. Place the salmon filet on the wrap then add the other half of the mixture.

• Wrap the salmon tightly with the plastic wrap and then the foil.

• Weight down the filet with a with heavy pan on top then place weight (cans are great) on top of pan.

• Place in fridge for 3-4 days with a tray underneath (to catch any drips), or longer for a stronger flavor, up to a week. Flip the fish halfway through your curing process.

• Unwrap the filet and rinse the excess salt off under running water, dry thoroughly with a towel.

• Allow to rest in fridge for 1 day before slicing (the cure needs to settle and fish needs to rest)

• Voila & enjoy!