Gravlax or gravad lax (Swedish, Danish), gravlaks (Norwegian), graavilohi (Finnish), graflax (Icelandic) is a Scandinavian dish consisting of raw salmon cured in salt, sugar, and dill. Gravlax is usually served as an appetizer, sliced thinly and accompanied by "hovmästarsås" (also known as "gravlaxsås"), a dill and mustard sauce, either on bread of some kind, or with boiled potatoes.

During the Middle Ages, gravlax was made by fishermen, who salted the salmon and lightly fermented it by burying it in the sand above the high-tide line. The word "gravlax" comes from the Scandinavian word "grav", which means literally "grave" or "hole in the ground" (in Swedish, Norwegian, Danish and Estonian), and "lax" (or "laks"), which means "salmon", thus gravlax is "salmon dug into the ground".

Today fermentation is no longer used in the production process. Instead the salmon is "buried" in a dry marinade of salt, sugar, and dill, and cured for a few days. As the salmon cures, by the action of osmosis, the moisture turns the dry cure into a highly concentrated brine, which can be used in Scandinavian cooking as part of a sauce Harv|Ruhlman|2005|pp=51-52. This same method of curing can be used for any fatty fish, but salmon is the most common. Modern variations on the marinade can include fennel and Pernod, black pepper and coriander seed, or horseradish Harv|Ruhlman|2005|p=51.

Commercially prepared gravlax is sometimes smoked, and as such is incorrectly termed "gravlax". Salmon is often served in Scandinavia also raw and uncured, not unlike sashimi, but calling it "gravlax" is also incorrect.

ee also

* Lox (salmon)
* Surströmming
* Rakfisk
* Hákarl
* Sashimi


* Citation
author1-link=Michael Ruhlman
publisher=W.W. Norton & Company
place=New York, NY

External links

* [ Recipe for gravlax and gravlaxsås]
* [ Cooking For Engineers: Gravlax] - recipe with step-by-step pictures

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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • gravlax — noun Salmon d in salt, seasoned with dill and sugar and served usually thinly sliced as an appetizer …   Wiktionary