Grilled Gravlax Salmon with Warm French Lentil Salad

I love grilled gravlax salmon with warm French lentil salad! The salmon is delicious hot or cold and so easy! It is grilled on one side only, leaving the top a little undercooked, and the skin deliciously crispy, but, if you prefer it, cook well done, until it is light pink all the way up.  The fish is quick-cooking once you get it on the grill, and the preparation easy, but you'll need to plan ahead so the fish can sit as long as possible in the herbs, one hour at least, 2-3 is better. The lentil salad is easy too with just 4 ingredients. You can make it start to finish while the fish marinates. Once cooked, the lentils should be mixed in the mustard vinaigrette while still hot, so that they can suck up the flavors of the dressing as they cool. And don't worry about adding all that garlic. When it's simmered this way, it just adds sweet nutty flavor. Yummy!

Heat the grill until very hot. Remove the salmon from the dish and with paper towel, wipe off as much of the dill mixture as possible, particularly on the skin side.

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Grilled Gravlax Salmon with warm French lentil Salad
Yields6 Servings
Prep Time2 hrsCook Time10 minsTotal Time2 hrs 10 mins
 3 large bunches dill, finely chopped
 2 tbsp sea salt
 1 tbsp sugar
 1 tbsp freshly ground white pepper
 2 lbs wild salmon fillet - middle cut
 5 ½ cups French lentils, picked over and rinsed
 5 cups water
 6 cloves garlic, peeled
Prepare the salmon:
1

Place 2/3 chopped dill over the bottom of a baking dish just large enough to hold the salmon fillet(s). Sprinkle the dill with 11/2 tablespoons of the salt, 3/4 tablespoon of the sugar and 2/3 the pepper. Lay the salmon skin side up on the dill. sprinkle the skin with the remaining salt, sugar, and pepper. Top with the remaining dill. Cover with plastic and place a weight on top of the salmon - I use bottled water. Leave in the fridge to marinate for 2-3 hours. 1 hour is the minimum.

wild salmon fillet

Make the lentil Salad
2

Meanwhile in a heavy 5-quart saucepot, place the lentils, water, peeled garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil over a high flame. Cover. Turn the heat to medium-low and cook until the lentils are just al dente, and still separate, about 40-50 minutes depending on their age. I test for doneness after 30 minutes to be on the safe side.

French Lentils

3

In a salad bowl make 1 recipe Classic Mustard Vinaigrette. Set aside.

4

As soon as the lentils are done, using a fine slotted spoon, scoop the lentils out of their cooking pot and into the reserved dressing. Include the cooked garlic cloves, which you can mash against the side of the bowl. Keep adding the lentils gently mixing as you go, until they are shiny with the dressing but not swimming in it. Reserve any lentils that are left for another use. Taste salad for salt and set aside until the salmon is cooked. Before serving, drizzle the lentils with a little extra oil if needed.

Cook the salmon
5

Heat the grill until very hot. Remove the salmon from the dish and with paper towel, wipe off as much of the dill mixture as possible, particularly on the skin side. Brush the grill with oil.

6

Brush the hot grill with oil. Place the salmon fillet on the hot grill skin side down. Close the cover and bring down the heat to around 350F. Cook the salmon for roughly 10 minutes per inch of thickness, checking it for doneness after 5-7 minutes. Do not flip it. The very top will be underdone and the skin deliciously crispy.

7

When the fish is ready, lift it off the grill with a slice taking care to leave the skin intact, and put it on a board skin side up. Cut into serving sizes. Spoon the warm lentils onto each plate and top with a piece of salmon, crispy skin side up.

Ingredients

 3 large bunches dill, finely chopped
 2 tbsp sea salt
 1 tbsp sugar
 1 tbsp freshly ground white pepper
 2 lbs wild salmon fillet - middle cut
 5 ½ cups French lentils, picked over and rinsed
 5 cups water
 6 cloves garlic, peeled

Directions

Prepare the salmon:
1

Place 2/3 chopped dill over the bottom of a baking dish just large enough to hold the salmon fillet(s). Sprinkle the dill with 11/2 tablespoons of the salt, 3/4 tablespoon of the sugar and 2/3 the pepper. Lay the salmon skin side up on the dill. sprinkle the skin with the remaining salt, sugar, and pepper. Top with the remaining dill. Cover with plastic and place a weight on top of the salmon - I use bottled water. Leave in the fridge to marinate for 2-3 hours. 1 hour is the minimum.

wild salmon fillet

Make the lentil Salad
2

Meanwhile in a heavy 5-quart saucepot, place the lentils, water, peeled garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil over a high flame. Cover. Turn the heat to medium-low and cook until the lentils are just al dente, and still separate, about 40-50 minutes depending on their age. I test for doneness after 30 minutes to be on the safe side.

French Lentils

3

In a salad bowl make 1 recipe Classic Mustard Vinaigrette. Set aside.

4

As soon as the lentils are done, using a fine slotted spoon, scoop the lentils out of their cooking pot and into the reserved dressing. Include the cooked garlic cloves, which you can mash against the side of the bowl. Keep adding the lentils gently mixing as you go, until they are shiny with the dressing but not swimming in it. Reserve any lentils that are left for another use. Taste salad for salt and set aside until the salmon is cooked. Before serving, drizzle the lentils with a little extra oil if needed.

Cook the salmon
5

Heat the grill until very hot. Remove the salmon from the dish and with paper towel, wipe off as much of the dill mixture as possible, particularly on the skin side. Brush the grill with oil.

6

Brush the hot grill with oil. Place the salmon fillet on the hot grill skin side down. Close the cover and bring down the heat to around 350F. Cook the salmon for roughly 10 minutes per inch of thickness, checking it for doneness after 5-7 minutes. Do not flip it. The very top will be underdone and the skin deliciously crispy.

7

When the fish is ready, lift it off the grill with a slice taking care to leave the skin intact, and put it on a board skin side up. Cut into serving sizes. Spoon the warm lentils onto each plate and top with a piece of salmon, crispy skin side up.

Grilled Gravlax Salmon with Warm French Lentil Salad

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