Pickled salmon is a tradition that runs deep in Alaska, preserving the summer’s harvest to last through the cold winter. It’s become a staple in my fridge, there is always a jar tucked back there - even in our tiny space on the fishing boat during the salmon season. Wild salmon is an incredibly healthy protein and pickled fish makes for a nutritious bite anytime of day. The ocean provides the world with one of our last truly wild foods and and I encourage you to source wild salmon when finding fish to eat. Alaska carefully manages its fisheries for a future of sustainability and choosing wild Alaska salmon supports hundreds of hardworking small boat fishermen and coastal communities. Onboard our small boat, we take time and effort to handle the wild ocean’s harvest as carefully as we can to provide people with high quality, delicious wild salmon. It’s so rewarding to work out on the water and I’m very grateful for the wild salmon that provide me with a livelihood and a way of life.
For the Salmon:1 ½ pounds of wild salmon, skin on and pin bones removedKosher SaltFor the Brine:2 cups apple cider vinegar2 cups of water2 tablespoons of olive oil¼ cup pickling spice½ cup of sugar2 bay leaves1 clove of garlic, thinly slicedFor the Jars:2 red onions, thinly sliced
1. Place fillet skin side down in a large dish and cover with kosher salt. Be sure to cover the fish completely. Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours.
2. Remove the salmon from the salt and rinse well.
3. With a fillet knife, remove the skin off the fillet.
4. Cut the salmon into bite size pieces. Set aside.
5. To make the pickling brine, combine vinegar, water, olive oil, pickling spices, sugar, bay leaves, and garlic in a saucepan. Heat to a simmer and slowly dissolve the sugar into the vinegar. Once sugar has completely dissolved, remove from heat, take out the bay leaves, and let cool.
6. Once the brine has cooled, thinly slice the red onion.
7. Layer the cubes of salmon and sliced red onion into your jars and pour the chilled pickling brine on top to fill the jar up completely.
8. Store jars in the refrigerator, allow the flavors to blend for a day or two before opening up the jar to enjoy. Eat within 3 weeks