Smoked Alaska Sockeye Salmon & Grain Bowl

Serves 4
Prep Time 0 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes

Pickling Solution:

2 cups rice wine vinegar

1 cup water

½ cup sugar

¼ cup salt


Pickled Beets:

Prepare at least 24 hours in advance

2 beets, medium sized (any color)

1 sprig thyme

1 orange, halved

2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 ½ cups pickling solution


Pickled Mustard Seeds:

Prepare at least 24 hours in advance

1 cup mustard seeds

1 ½ cups pickling solution



2 cups farro

½ white onion, halved

½ head fennel, halved

3 cloves garlic, smashed

1 fresh bay leaf

1 sprig thyme


Everything Crumb:

2 Tbsp. caraway seeds, whole

2 Tbsp. poppy seeds, whole

2 Tbsp. sesame seeds, whole

1 Tbsp. onion powder

1 Tbsp. garlic powder

1 Tbsp. flake sea salt, Jacobson’s preferred, Maldon a good substitute


For Salmon and Bowl Assembly:

1 Lb. Alaska sockeye salmon fillets, skin-off, thawed in refrigerator overnight

2 Tbsp. fresh tarragon leaves

2 Tbsp. fresh parsley leaves

2 Tbsp. chives, finely chopped, divided

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, divided

1 lemon, juiced and zested


Recipe by Chef Michael Scelfo

For Pickling Solution:

Combine all ingredients in a sauce pot over medium heat until sugar and salt dissolve. Remove from sauce pot and set aside to cool to room temp.

For Pickled Beets:

Pre-heat oven to 350°F. Combine beets, thyme, extra virgin olive oil, a good pinch of salt and pepper in a high-walled baking dish. Squeeze orange halves over the mix and toss to combine. Cover baking dish and roast until the beets are tender and easily pierced with a paring knife, about 35 minutes. Once tender, remove dish from oven and leave covered for 15 minutes to let beets cool slightly and steam a bit. Using a dish towel (or two, they will be hot!) peel the skins off the beets. Once beets are free of skin, cut into ¼ inch cubes and place into a bowl. Cover with pickling solution and let sit in refrigerator at least overnight. Beets will keep covered in pickling solution in a refrigerator for 2 weeks.

For Pickled Mustard Seeds:

Boil mustard seeds in enough cold water to cover. Drain water and repeat this process 3 times to blanch and remove bitterness. Combine with pickling solution, bring to a boil and let cool to room temperature. Mustard seeds will keep covered in pickling solution in a refrigerator for 2 weeks.

For Farro:

Combine all above ingredients with 6 cups water, salt and pepper to taste in a medium pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook until farro is tender, but not mushy, about 30 minutes. Drain excess water and spread on a sheet tray to cool, removing spent aromatics.

 For Everything Crumb:

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Set aside.

For Bowl Assembly:

Season salmon liberally with salt and pepper on both sides, then rub with 2 Tbsp. olive oil. Smoke salmon on a sheet tray at 225°F, full smoke cycle, until just cooked through, about 45 minutes. Set aside to cool. 

In a large bowl, add cooked farro, pickled beets, 2 Tbsp. of pickled mustard seeds, 2 Tbsp. olive oil, picked tarragon and parsley, 1 Tbsp. chives, zest and juice of 1 lemon and mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide farro into four bowls. Using the same large bowl, break up the salmon and season with a bit of salt and pepper. Divide salmon into a neat pile on top of the farro in each bowl. Garnish with a heavy pinch of the everything spice, the remaining chives, a pinch of flake salt, and a light drizzle of olive oil.