Eat your gin! Beetroot cured salmon with Shortcross Gin, cucumber & dill

Northern Ireland has a rich (and delicious) culinary heritage. The region is filled with a wonderful natural larder, from its wild coasts to its endless green fields. The makers of Shortcross Gin are part of a tight-knit community of passionate craft producers, whose artisan products together make this a truly gourmet destination.

Throughout 2016, Northern Ireland is showcasing its culinary prowess with 366 days of foodie experiences in its official Year of Food and Drink. Each month is dedicated to its own theme, from Breakfast Month in January, to Brewing and Distilling in April, to a celebration of all things bread and baking in September. Check out for full details of events running throughout the year.

In the spirit of these celebrations, here's a delicious recipe making use of Shortcross Gin (if you can bear not to just drink it all of course!). It's the perfect starter to treat your guests to this Easter weekend.

Beetroot cured salmon with Shortcross Gin, cucumber and dill

Created for Shortcross Gin by David Gillmore, Head Chef at James Street South, Belfast.

For the Salmon

1/2 side fresh salmon

1 medium grated beetroot (red)

8 tbsp white wine vinegar

6 tbsp caster sugar

6 tbsp rock salt

Juice and rind of 3 lemons

Mix all ingredients and rub into salmon, cover and leave in fridge for 16-20 hrs

For the gin, cucumber and dill dressing

1 cucumber (peeled and shaved into ribbons using a peeler)

2 tbsp caster sugar

2 tbsp white wine vinegar 

40 ml Shortcross Gin

Salt and white pepper

Heat the sugar and vinegar until sugar dissolves, then add the gin and cucumber, season to taste and leave for 1hr.

To serve

Remove all the curing mix from the salmon and pat dry. Slice very thinly at an angle.

This is great served on wheaten bread and butter, or as salad using little gem leaves and shallot rings.

Garnish with fresh-picked dill and capers.

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