Visit us at to buy direct-to-market Wild Alaskan salmon, halibut, sablefish, and cod.

Cured Salmon with Fennel

Micheal Ruhlman
Course Appetizer, Salad
Cuisine Scandanavian
Servings 6 people


  • baking dish, large enough for salmon
  • plastic wrap
  • pan
  • canned good or a brick for weighing down
  • butcher's paper or parchment paper
  • large bowl


  • 1 Popsie Sockeye Salmon Fillet skin on, pin bones removed
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 cup sugar light brown, packed
  • ¾ cup kosher salt
  • ¼ cup pernod (anise-flavored liquor)
  • 1 bulb fennel, with stalks and leaves, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup fennel seeds, toasted
  • 2 Tbsp white peppercorns, toasted and cracked


  • Mix the sugars and salt well. Sprinkle 1/2 of the sugar/salt mixture over the bottom of the baking dish.
  • Place salmon skin side down on the mixture.
  • Sprinkle both sides of the salmon with the pernod, then cover with the remaining salt mixture.
  • Layer the sliced fennel over the top, followed by the fennel seeds and the white peppercorns.
  • Cover with plastic wrap.
  • Place a large pan on top of the salmon and weigh it down with canned goods or brick between 4-8 pounds.
  • Refrigerate salmon for 48 hours. (After 48 hours, the salmon should be firm to the touch. If it stills feels raw and squishy, cover and leave to cure for 24 more hours.)
  • When salmon is fully cured, discard the spices, rinse the salt and sugar off.
  • Pat dry. To store, wrap butcher paper.
  • To serve, slice thinly and serve with a dollop of crème fraîche and a bagel or crackers.


To toast peppercorns or any small spices, heat them gently in any small skillet.
Optional Preparations: Substitute any of the following for fennel for flavor variations.
Traditional Grav Lox: Generous bunch of dill.
Citrus: Orange and lemon zest.  
Pastrami Style: Black pepper and coriander
Horseradish: Grated fresh horseradish.
Keyword Alaskan Salmon, Cured Salmon, gravlax, kosher salt, lemon zest, Salmon Fillet, Salmon Lox, Sockeye Salmon Fillet, The Popsie Fish Company, Wild Alaska Salmon
Love this recipe?Let us know how it was!