Salmon marinated in rum, cucumber and puffed rice

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Living with a chef has many advantages and one of them is that sometimes I’m really stunned what taste combinations occur to him. The first time he told me he would marinate a salmon in rum (Czech rum called tuzemak, which is made of potatoes and you just don’t want to drink it. Unless you don’t enjoy life anymore) I laughed out loud. What the hell, I was saying to myself. However, I tasted it and it worked! So if you like raw fish and rum, give it a try. The recipe is easy and will definitely impress!

For 4 portions

250 g salmon with skin
100 g brown sugar
70 g coarse salt
100 ml rum (anything you have at home would do)
30 g sour cream
1 lemon
20 g wild black rice
1 granny smith apple
1 mini bell pepper
1 cucumber
sunflower oil

Salmon marinating is a really traditional process. The most popular recipe is gravlax (salt, sugar and dill), which actually preserves the fish, too. Salmon contains a significant amount of fat that absorbs most of the flavour when marinated.

Debone the fish (use tweezers for the bones) and scrape off the scales. Combine the salt and sugar and put the fish into a deeper container: it will release a lot of juice. Cover the salmon with the mixture from all angles and drizzle with rum at the end. Put it in the fridge and weight it down with another container (be careful not to smash the fish). Leave it there for at least 16 hours. Rinse the salmon with water, dry it and remove the skin.

Julienne the cucumber – we used the endless julienne cutter that makes the process much easier. Cut the apple: you can make little rounds or any shapes you prefer, and slice the mini pepper.

Heat the oil in a small pot and fry the wild rice at the highest temperature possible – it will only take a few seconds. Dry the rice on paper towel and season with salt. The rice will puff and the skin will crack.

Mix the sour cream with some lemon juice. Slice the lemon zest thinly and use it to decorate the dish.

Cut the fish into thin slices. Put everything on a plate and sprinkle with puffed rice. Enjoy!

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