Brining fish?You bet.This recipe is a take-off from one created by Jerry Traunfeld, a leading Northwest chef. It’s very easy but plenty elegant enough to serve to guests. Brining does magical things to the salmon, changing the texture into a meltingly tender, moist bite of heaven.
2 1/2 lbs. salmon fillets, skinned
2 large bunches fresh dill
1 1/2 cups water
2 tbsp sea salt
1 tbsp sugar
1 small bunch fresh dill, stems removed
1.Bring water, salt and sugar to a simmer in a small saucepan and stir until the salt and sugar dissolves. Stir in dill. Transfer brine to a large liquid measuring cup and add enough ice to dilute the brine to 3 cups.
3.Remove any pin bones in the salmon, cut away any gray flesh that was next to the skin, slice the fish into six equal pieces. Place it in a bowl or plastic container and pour the brine over to completely submerge the fish. Let the fish sit in brine for one hour at room temperature.
3. Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Drain the brine and rinse the salmon to remove excess salt. Blot the fish dry with paper towels. Spread 1/2 the dill on the bottom of a large shallow baking dish. Arrange the fish fillets on top of dill, leaving space between them. Cover the fish with the remaining dill. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the fish flakes very slightly when pressed on, but is still slightly translucent. Do not over cook. Remove the dill and serve right away.
Can be served with: lemon wedges and/or melted butter (or) a simple beurre blanc (look in any cookbook or online), with some dill added at the end