If I lived near the sea, I'd be tempted to cure salmon the way Scandinavian fishermen did in the Middle Ages, by salting it lightly and burying it in the sand above the high-tide line until it was pleasantly fermented. Thus gravlax—from grav, which means "grave," and lax, which means "salmon." The fermented kind is undoubtedly staging its comeback (along with kombucha and kimchi and every other funky thing), but if you're lacking a piece of beachfront property, you can always bury your salmon in a dry marinade of salt, sugar, spices and fresh dill for a few days. The salmon cures by osmosis, and the moisture turns the dry cure into a highly concentrated brine. This method works for most fatty fish, but salmon is the traditional favorite. It has a mild, sweet flavor and a velvety, unctuous mouthfeel that goes nicely with icy cold vodka and heated conversation.