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I love gravlax and have recently gotten into making it - partly to avoid the nitrates in commercially prepared gravlax, and partly for budget. But even making it still costs so much for fresh salmon ($16/lb).

I'm curious if I can just use thawed frozen salmon since I can get practically a whole half a salmon for like $15 at Walmart.

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Yes, you can. If the frozen salmon is of high quality, there is no reason based on the food science that it should not work.

Many of the recipes and articles on the web indicate that you should (or sometimes can) start with frozen salmon. Some, including Cooking for Engineers, specifically recommend using frozen salmon to reduce the risk from parasites:

Parasites, such as roundworms, can naturally reside in salmon regardless of if it was frozen or fresh. For safety, use salmon that has been commercially frozen or freeze the salmon yourself to at least -10°F (-23°C) for at least 7 days.

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Yes, it should be prepared from frozen. Salt curing is insufficient for killing pathogens, unless cured for weeks. The FDA recommends freezing at -20˚C / -4˚F for 7 days, as well as being very careful to prevent cross-contamination during preparation. It's worth noting that freezing does not kill all pathogens either, but it does greatly reduce risk. Source: fda.gov/Food/FoodScienceResearch/SafePracticesforFoodProcesses/… –  Bruce Alderson Aug 16 at 19:02

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