1 lb. center-cut salmon or other fatty fish
½ cup kosher salt
½ cup sugar
½ cup chopped dill
4 to 5 thin lemon slices
12 Bagels (see recipe)
Cream cheese, capers and thinly sliced red onion for serving
● Day 1: Mix the salt, sugar and dill together in a small bowl and set aside.
● Rinse the salmon and pat it dry with a paper towel. Check for any small bones that may remain. Place a long sheet of plastic wrap on the counter, then place the fish on top, skin-side down.
● Pack the sugar-salt mixture evenly over the fish, covering all exposed areas. Place the lemon slices on top, then wrap tightly in plastic, pressing out all the air. Wrap the fish in a second layer of plastic.
● Place the fish on a rimmed tray, then place another on top and weigh it down with a large can or heavy object. Place the whole set-up in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
● Day 2: Drain any collected liquid and flip the fish. Return the top tray and weights and refrigerate another 24 hours.
● Day 3: Remove the fish from the plastic and rinse any remaining salt or sugar with cold water. Pat dry with paper towels and taste a small slice. If too salty, continue rinsing. If too bland, add more salt-sugar mixture, wrap in plastic with let cure another 24 hours.
● Slice thinly and serve on bagels with cream cheese, capers and thinly sliced red onion