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Citrus-Cured Yarra Valley Salmon, Caviar with Baby Beetroot

Try your hand at this stunning recipe, courtesy of Matt Moran.

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  • 1 small side of salmon (about 900g), belly trimmed

  • 150 g white sugar

  • 100 g table salt

  • 20 black peppercorns, coarsely crushed

  • 20 coriander seeds, coarsely crushed

  • 1 lemon rind, finely grated on a microplane

  • 1 lime rind, finely grated on a microplane

  • 1 orange rind, finely grated on a microplane

  • ½ cup dill, finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 3 teaspoons white sugar

  • 3 teaspoons rice wine vinegar

  • 500 ml water

  • 8 baby beetroot, small tender leaves trimmed and reserved

  • To serve

  • 2 oranges, segmented

  • Handful of endive leaves

  • Crème fraiche

  • 50 g Yarra Valley salmon caviar

  • Juice of ½ lemon

  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling

  • Salt and pepper


  • 1.

    Mix sugar, salt, crushed peppercorns and coriander seeds, citrus rinds and half the dill in a bowl to

  • 2.

    Combine well. Spread half the curing mixture in the base of a tray large enough to fit the salmon

  • 3.

    Snugly. Place salmon, skin-side down, in tray, then spread remaining curing mixture over the flesh,

  • 4.

    Rubbing in as you go. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate to cure (you’ll need to cure for at

  • 5.

    Least 12 hours for a light cure and up to 24 hours for a more intense cure).

  • 6.

    To cook the baby beetroot, stir the sugar, vinegar and water in a saucepan over medium heat until

  • 7.

    Sugar dissolves and then bring to the boil. Add the beetroot and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until

  • 8.

    Tender. To check if ready, pierce with a skewer, then set aside to cool in the liquid. Drain beetroot

  • 9.

    And peel (use disposable gloves if you want to avoid stained hands), cut into halves and set aside.

  • 10.

    Rinse curing mixture off the salmon under cold running water, pat dry thoroughly with absorbent

  • 11.

    Paper. Remove pin-bones with fish tweezers, then spread mustard over salmon flesh with the back

  • 12.

    Of a spoon. Scatter remaining dill over and press to cover.

  • 13.

    To slice the salmon, starting at one end of the salmon fillet, cut straight down through the flesh

  • 14.

    With a thin sharp knife until you hit the skin, slicing at 2mm intervals (don’t cut all the way

  • 15.

    Through, the flesh should still be attached to the skin). To remove the skin, cut down through the

  • 16.

    First incision then slice between the skin and the flesh, keeping your knife flat and cutting along to

  • 17.

    Remove the skin in a single piece (discard skin).

  • To Serve::

  • 1.

    Arrange six or seven salmon slices on serving plates, divide beetroot among plates and scatter the

  • 2.

    Orange segments, endive and baby beetroot leaves over the top. Dollop with crème fraiche and

  • 3.

    Salmon caviar, then squeeze the lemon over the top, drizzle with olive oil, season to taste and

  • 4.


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