3 to 4 tablespoons Cointreau or other orange liqueur
1 1/4 pounds salmon fillet with skin
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup coarse salt
1/2 tablespoon fennel seeds, toasted and crushed
Zest of 1 lemon, grated
Zest of 1 lime, grated
Zest of 1 orange, grated
2 thyme sprigs, leaves crushed
1 dried bay leaf, crumbled
Rub Cointreau over flesh side of salmon. In a half-gallon zip-top plastic bag, combine sugar, salt and fennel. Add zests, thyme and bay leaf; mix well.
Put salmon in bag, gently roll to coat, then press sugar-salt mixture into meat. Place plastic bag on a plate, put a weight on top (like a heavy skillet) and refrigerate overnight or for about 12 to 14 hours.
When ready to serve, remove bag from refrigerator and thoroughly scrape off citrus-salt mixture, dabbing with a damp cloth if necessary.
Before serving, slice gravlax paper-thin on a diagonal and serve on crackers, with a dollop of citrus creme fraiche with tarragon.
Warm French bread in the oven and then spread with a little cream cheese infused with some orange juice. And garnish with wedges of orange and zest of lemon and orange.