Bloody Mary Pickled Salmon
When Bloody Mary meets pickled salmon, you get a showstopping appetizer that’s a refreshing change from traditional herring and is such a fun way to start a meal! Serve with crackers.
8 ounces tomato sauce
½ cup apple cider vinegar
⅓ cup honey
2 tablespoons harissa paste
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 pounds skinless, boneless salmon fillets
1 small Spanish onion, halved, thinly sliced into half-moons
2 tablespoons pickling spice
Optional garnishes and accompaniments: harissa seasoning and freshly squeezed lemon juice, celery sticks, pickles, pimento-stuffed olives, lemon wedges
1 In a 3-inch-deep skillet, combine the tomato sauce, vinegar, honey, harissa paste, turmeric, salt, and 1 cup water and bring to a boil over medium heat. While the brine is cooking, slice the salmon into ¾-inch strips and then crosswise into ¾-inch cubes.
2 Once the brine is boiling, remove the skillet from the heat and add the salmon, onions, and pickling spice. Give it a gentle stir to ensure that the pickling spice and brine are evenly dispersed. Cover the pan with a lid and set aside to cool completely, about 1 hour.
3 Once fully cooled, transfer the salmon and brine to a 2-quart glass jar and refrigerate for 24 hours.
4 If using the harissa seasoning as a garnish, add it to a small dish. Dip the rim of eight jars or glasses into some freshly squeezed lemon juice and then into the harissa seasoning, twisting to ensure an even coating around the rim. Divide the fish between the glasses. Garnish each glass with a celery stick, pickles or olives, and a lemon wedge.
• Using this method, the fish will be very lightly cooked with a melt-in-your-mouth texture. If you prefer a firmer fish, simmer the fish in the brine over low heat for 3 to 5 minutes before removing it from the heat.
• If you don’t like biting into the pickling spice, you can wrap it in a piece of cheesecloth and knot it at the top before adding it to the brine. Discard before serving.