Sockeye Gravlax Salad with Pomegranate Balsamic Dressing

| September 11, 2010 | 0 Comments

One of the blessings of living in the Pacific Northwest is that during certain times of year there is an abundance of affordable wild salmon: Chinook, Coho, Steelhead. Some if it comes from right off the Oregon coast, while most of it comes from the strong runs in Alaska. 

Many times during the year, the price of wild salmon at grocery stores here can actually dip below the price of farm-raised salmon. I’ve seen wild Alaska Chinook for as little as $2.99 per pound at Fred Meyer grocery store. I prefer the taste of wild salmon to that of farm-raised. In the wild, salmon eat a variety of fish and crustaceans, which gives them their natural vibrant color. According to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, farmed salmon are fed processed, heat-treated and pelletized food that contains artificial colors (canthaxanthin and astaxanthin) to give their flesh a color similar to wild salmon. Without this artificial color, farmed salmon flesh would appear grayish. Think about that the next time you ponder the selection in the fish case and are debating wild vs. farmed, fed natural vs. fish chow. Many stores in Oregon include labels pointing out that farmed salmon contain artificial colors to help uneducated consumers make informed choices. 

So whenever I see a deal on wild salmon at the grocery store, I buy as much as I can afford to and vacuum-pack and freeze it so that our family can enjoy it when wild salmon prices start to rise as the salmon season declines. 

Another thing I like to do with wild salmon is to make gravlax, which can be sliced, vacuum-packed and frozen if you’re not going to eat it right away. To read my previous blog post on how to make gravlax, click here

In addition to enjoying gravlax as appetizers, another way I serve gravlax is as the base for a light and flavorful salad topped with pomegranate balsamic dressing. The dressing of pomegranate juice, balsamic vinegar and olive oil offers a fruity burst of palate-cleansing flavor when paired with the gravlax. 

Gravlax salad with pomegranate balsamic dressing


If you don’t want to hassle with making your own gravlax, you can purchase it from the store to use with this dish. 

Sockeye Gravlax Salad with Pomegranate Balsamic Dressing 

Serves 4 

  1. 4-6 ounces (115-170 gr.) of gravlax
  2. 2 navel oranges, peeled and sectioned
  3. 6-8 ounces (170-225 gr.) mesclun salad mix, washed and spun dry
  4. 2 tablespoons (30 ml.) pomegranate juice
  5. 2 tablespoons (30 ml.) balsamic vinegar
  6. 1 tablespoon (15 ml.) olive oil
  7. Salt and pepper to taste
  • Divide gravlax into 4 equal portions and arrange on salad plates.
  • Divide orange sections into 4 equal portions and arrange on salad plates.
  • Divide salad mix into 4 equal portions and place on top of gravlax on each plate.
  • Combine pomegranate juice, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper in a small measuring cup or other container and mix well with a small whisk or immersible electric mixer.
  • Pour salad dressing over each salad serving and serve.


— Vic

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Category: Salad, Seafood

About the Author (Author Profile)

Victor Panichkul is a journalist and writer by training; a cook, wine lover and photographer by passion; and a lover of the outdoors since moving to Oregon more than 10 years ago. He is a native of Bangkok, Thailand.

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