6 servings

Jacques Pépin made this dish with Francis Lam during our recent visit to Pepin's home-studio kitchen. Listen to their conversation about the dish and check out their in-depth interview about Jacques's storied career and thoughts on current food media. Also see The Splendid Table Jacques Pépin Collection for many more recipes from Jacques.

Behind-the-scenes video from Jacques Pépin's kitchen


  • One 3/4-pound piece boneless and skinless salmon fillet
  • About 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • About 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Buttered pumpernickel or rye bread

Garnishes (per serving)

  • About 1 tablespoon each: drained capers, parsley leaves, chopped red onion, chopped scallion and radishes
  • A dash of extra virgin olive oil


1. Cutting on a bias at about a 45-degree angle, remove thin slices, each weighing about 1 ounce, from the fillet. You should have twelve slices. Sprinkle each of six plates with some of the kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Be generous; the salmon needs to be salted to cure.

2. Arrange two slices of salmon in one layer (without overlap) on top of each seasoned plate. Sprinkle a little more salt and pepper on top, and cover the plates with plastic wrap. Set aside to cure for at least 20 minutes but as long as 1 hour.

3. At serving time, sprinkle the cured salmon slices with the garnishes. Serve with the buttered pumpernickel or rye bread.

Recipe excerpted from Jacques Pepin Celebrates. Copyright 2001 Knopf.