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GRAVLAX AND BAGELS

Ingredients

  • FOR THE GRAVLAX:
  • 1 lb. salmon, see post for suggestions
  • 1/2 C kosher salt
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • zest of one lemon
  • 1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 TBLS fresh dill, chopped
  • 1 handful fresh dill
  • FOR THE SOURDOUGH BAGELS:
  • 150g active sourdough starter
  • 250g warm water
  • 24g sugar
  • 500g bread flour
  • 9g fine sea salt
  • 20g honey
  • favorite bagel toppings
  • TOPPINGS FOR GRAVLAX AND BAGELS:
  • whipped cream cheese
  • thinly sliced red onion
  • capers
  • thinly sliced cucumbers
  • thinly sliced lemon
  • fresh dill
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As you may already know, I am currently obsessed with making Artisan Sourdough Bread. Well, not only bread. In the past month, as I tend to my sourdough starter, I have been using the discard to make sourdough muffins, crackers and most recently, sourdough bagels. What goes so well with homemade bagels? Gravlax, of course! Although, this was a two-day love affair, the end result was worth every single second. Honestly, I amazed myself with this one. Even though this recipe for Gravlax and Bagels is time-consuming, it’s fairly simple to create.

Take a peek at this short video I created on TikTok by clicking here. If you have not yet signed up for this social media platform, use my code 5SSIS800K0H06 to create an account.

Of course, you do not have to go about making your own bagels. Fresh bagels from your local bagel shop or deli, will work perfectly. However, after feeding my sourdough starter, I decided to use the discard to make homemade bagels. Knowing the gravlax would take about two days to finish, this gave me plenty of time to create the bagel dough, let it rise overnight and prepare the bagels that morning.

three half of homemade sourdough bagels topped with gravlax, red onion, dill, capers and lemon

LET’S TALK SALMON

What type of salmon should you use to prepare gravlax or lox? It is vital to use super fresh salmon. If you are concerned about the freshness of the salmon, you can place it in the freezer for a day or so, to ensure no parasites. Alternatively, you can purchase frozen. However, be sure to thaw completely prior to curing. Ultimately, sushi-grade salmon will work beautifully. Try to find salmon with a fair amount of fat lines. This will make for a more tender lox. Have the salmon cut from the belly, instead of the thinner end.

Although the terms gravlax, lox and smoked salmon are used interchangeably by many, gravlax and lox are cured, not smoked. However, feel free to smoke the gravlax (lox) to create smoked salmon. This was a bit out of my wheelhouse. Maybe someday. Honestly, once my salmon cured, the taste was quite similar to smoked. If I must say myself, absolutely incredible!

So, what is the difference between gravlax and lox? Lox are prepared simply with a salt cure. Gravlax are also prepared using a salt cure, with something extra added to the cure. This something extra may be dill, or other added spices.

HOW TO CREATE GRAVLAX

Honestly, the process of creating lox and gravlax is quite simple. In a bowl, combine the salt, sugar, lemon zest, black pepper (or peppercorns) and fresh dill. Sprinkle a bit of the cure on the bottom of a nonreactive dish. For this recipe, I used a glass pie dish. Place the salmon, skin side down, onto the dish. Sprinkle the top of the salmon with a bit more of the cure. Top with fresh dill.

Cover tightly with plastic wrap. The salmon needs weighted. I topped the wrapped salmon with a pie dish of the same size then added a few cans of vegetables to provide weight. Place in fridge and allow to cure for two to three days. Flip every 12 hours, or at least once a day.

For me, I was just kind of experimenting with a smaller piece of salmon. If you wish to cure a bit more salmon, have the salmon cut into two filets. Once the first filet has been covered in the cure and dill, cover the flesh side of the second filet with the cure and place on top of the fresh dill (skin side facing up). Doing it this way will take a bit longer to cure. Plan on at least three to four days. As mentioned above, continue to flip one, to two times per day.

Once the salmon has cured. Rinse under cold water to remove the brine. Pat dry with paper towels. With a super sharp knife, cut (on the bias) into thin strips. Enjoy alone, on a bagel (see below) and/or on crackers. Honestly, however you desire. You can also try this beautiful gravlax in my Fancy Deviled Eggs, or as a substitute for smoked salmon in my recipe for Poached Eggs with Smoked Salmon Toast Points. Go WILD…use in homemade Sushi!

HOW TO MAKE HOMEMADE SOURDOUGH BAGELS

As mentioned earlier, you can totally skip this step and purchase super fresh bagels from your local bagel shop. However, I was feeling extra fancy. Honestly, I wanted to challenge myself. As most of you know, I do not consider myself much of a baker. Given that, I totally followed this recipe for Homemade Sourdough Bagels from The Beauty Revival. The bagels had the perfect skin with a soft inside. Totally pleased with this recipe. The taste and texture of the bagels were spot on!

If I were you, I suggest watching a few videos on YouTube on how to shape bagels. Although, I liked the rustic feel to mine, I want to focus more on this step my next go round.

Of course, I created a short TikTok video making these beauties. Click here to view. Sesame bagels are my favorite, so I had to make a few with sesame seeds. The others, I resorted to Everything But the Bagel Seasoning from Trader Joe’s. To be honest, I am not sure what all the hype is about this seasoning. I am not really a fan. Way too much going on.

BUILDING GRAVLAX AND BAGELS

Once the salmon has been cured, and the bagels have been made (or purchased), it’s time to build our Gravlax and Bagels. Cut the bagels in half. Spread a generous “schmear” of whipped cream cheese on both sides. Top with three to four pieces of gravlax. Garnish with thinly sliced red onion, lemon and cucumber. Garnish with capers and fresh dill. ENJOY!

three half of homemade sourdough bagels topped with gravlax, red onion, dill, capers and lemon

LET’S GET SOCIAL!

I am more than just recipes. I love fashion and style too! Most importantly, I love my Family (my Hubby and my Fur Babies). My Husband (aka my “Kitchen Bitch”) means the world to me. He’s pretty damn cool too. Not only is he one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, he also has had a lengthy career in professional hockey. Not only winning two Stanley Cups with the Pittsburgh Penguins in the early ’90’s, but most recently winning the Calder Cup with the Charlotte Checkers, amongst many other accolades. If you live in Charlotte and play hockey, or have a family member who plays, be sure to contact him. He is known as one of the best skate sharpeners in the world!

Our life has changed dramatically in the past few years with the passing of our two goldendoodles, Vegas and Viva. We were lucky enough to have Vegas for five years (totally wish it was longer). Most recently, losing our Viva to a brain tumor in July of 2020. We welcomed our mini goldendoodle 7, almost seven years ago. We just added the amazing Hazel! Of course, I am always posting tons and tons of photos! Be sure to check out my recipe for Pet Bone Broth! This broth is super rich in nutrients and will provide your pet with a multitude of health benefits!

Be sure to follow me on social media! I’m always talking food, fashion, and family! I also love sharing some of my favorite Amazon Finds too. Click here to check out my Amazon page! FacebookInstagramTikTokTwitter and Pinterest!

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