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Let the good times be(gin) this Australian Gin Day

salmon ceviche on white plate and, left, bottle of Australian Distilling Co Gin on a marble table with navy napkin and fork to the right.Saturday 19th of November marks Australian Gin Day - an annual celebration aimed at bringing gin lovers together to enjoy the country's finest distillers. Le Cordon Bleu Melbourne cuisine teacher and chef Mariano Velazquez is celebrating the occasion by indulging in a Tasmanian Salmon Ceviche with a twist.

“I love the colours and flavours of this recipe, a modern take on a traditional ceviche,” he says.

For this recipe, Chef Mariano recommends using gin from one of his favourite local distillers, Australian Distilling Co.

“The salmon, combined with the citrus and Australian Distilling Co. Gin makes this the perfect dish during any summer celebration,” he adds.

“The Australian Distilling Co. Gin goes in both the curing mix and the vinaigrette. It brings a lot of freshness and aromas like juniper, coriander and cardamom, which is the perfect combination of flavours that go with the fish and its accompaniments.”

Left: Close up of Salmon Ceviche and, right: Navy bottle of Australian Distilling Co. Gin.

Tasmanian Salmon Ceviche with Australian Distilling Co. Gin, Citrus and Aniseed Myrtle Vinaigrette

Serves: 8
Preparation time: 1
Cooking time: nil


For the salmon
  • 1kg Tasmanian salmon fillet, skinless and boneless
  • 100g sea salt flakes
  • 100g granulated sugar
  • 150ml Australian Distilling Co. Gin
  • 50g juniper berries, crushed
For the garnish
  • 50g orange segments
  • 50g pink grapefruit segments
  • 20g lemon segments
  • 20g pomelo segments
  • 10g native finger lime
  • 20g pickled ginger
  • 10g crushed pink pepper corns
  • 3tbsp mixed micro salad greens
  • 2 fennel bulbs, shaved very fine using a mandolin slicer
For the vinaigrette
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 4tbsp citrus juices (left over from the citrus segments)
  • 2tbsp Australian Distilling Co. Gin
  • 1tbsp chardonnay vinegar
  • 1tbsp liquid brine (left over from curing the salmon)
  • 30g Dijon mustard
  • 1tsp aniseed myrtle
  • 100ml olive oil
  • 120ml grapeseed oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


To cure salmon

1. Combine the sea salt flakes, crushed juniper berries and sugar and mix well.
Lay a sheet of plastic wrap or baking paper on the kitchen bench and use half of the salt mixture to cover the sheet.
3. Place the salmon on top of the salt, then dredge the salmon fillet with the Australian Distilling Co. Gin.
4. Cover the salmon with the remainder of the salt mixture.
5. Wrap the salmon tightly in the plastic wrap or baking paper, place on a kitchen tray and leave to cure in the fridge for 6-8 hours.
6. Once the salmon has cured, remove from the fridge and wipe off the salt and sugar mixture, making sure you keep the liquid residue for use in the dressing.
7. Re-wrap the fish and store in the fridge until required.

For the garnish

8. Slice the fennel as thin as possible using a mandolin slicer, then place the fennel in a bowl of ice water and leave to chill. The fennel will crisp and curl.
9. Se
gment the citrus fruit, cut into small ½ cm pieces and mix together.

For the dressing

10. Combine all the ingredients for the dressing into one bowl and whisk together. Season with salt and pepper.

To serve

11. Use olive oil to lightly oil 8 serving plates and sprinkle with a little sea salt.
12. Using a very sharp knife, slice the salmon fillet into very thin slices then place evenly on each plate.
13. Top each plate with a liberal amount of the citrus mixture and fennel shavings.
14. Sprinkle a pinch of the crushed pink pepper corns and micro salad greens on top, then spoon over the vinaigrette. Serve chilled.

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