Okay y’all, I feel like I’ve accomplished a huge milestone recently that I must share with you. I made this hazelnut crusted trout last weekend as well as cooking up about 8 pounds of fish total for our Red Wine and Fish SLCmixer. Although, I have cooked fish before, nothing to this degree and to be quite honest I was more than a bit overwhelmed by the task. Luckily, I had a partner in crime to help, Annalise, who came to my rescue with her own expertise. She too hadn’t handled a lot of fish but at least we could go at this challenge together.
We set down to plan this Sunday afternoon gathering, researching recipes, writing down ingredients and tips for cooking massive amounts of fish. Then we got on task, picking up our new friends (halibut, wild and farmed salmon, and steelhead trout) from Fog River. Fog River is the local Salt Lake provider of fresh fish to many of the top restaurants including Copper Onion. They recently opened their doors to the public selling fish on Saturday afternoons at their warehouse. If you don’t have access to fresh fish in your city I urge you to start asking the local restaurants you trust where they source their fish from. You too might find a little gem like Fog River in your city!
We had 3 courses of fish to prepare, the last one being my favorite, the Hazelnut Crusted Trout over Arugula and Sun-Dried Cherries. The first was a sampling of two salmons, farm raised, and wild caught with a cucumber dill creme fraiche over celery leaves, and the second course, baked then lightly seared halibut with a wild mushroom thyme creme sauce. Our goal was to challenge perceptions of what pairs with fish, and use the sauces to pair the fish with red wines instead of the normal white wine/fish pairing.
The afternoon meal was a success and we ended with a delicious mango-pineapple-ginger galette (or rustic pie) made by Annalise using her trusty pie crust recipe, that everyone raved about! You can find her recipe here and I’ll leave you today with a challenge that if I can do, so can you… Hazelnut Crusted Trout… believe me it’s much easier than you would think and the aroma of toasting hazelnuts while you cook is almost intoxicating!!
Hazelnut Crusted Trout Recipe
- 3/4 cup hazelnuts, finely chopped or ground
- 1.5 lb 24 oz steelhead trout, buy in a large filet with no bones
- 2 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 3 cups arugula
- 1/2 cup dried-cherries
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- juice from 1/2 lemon
- Pulse nuts in a food processor until finely ground.
- Rinse trout and pat dry. Using a sharp knife, slowly remove the skin from the fish. Then, divide the fish into 4 separate portions. Season with salt and pepper.
- Beat eggs in a pie plate. Spread ground nuts on a dinner plate. Dip both sides of trout first in egg and then nuts. Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat until hot but not smoking and cook trout, shaking skillet to prevent sticking and turning once with a metal spatula, until browned on both sides and just cooked through, about 12 minutes total.
- While trout is cooking, toss arugula in olive oil and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper, then divide the greens onto 4 plates. Sprinkle each plate with a few dried cherries.
- Once trout is done cooking, place onto a paper towel to drain some of the oil, then transfer to each plate. Serve with greens and dried cherries.
For info on more Salt Lake City food events and tastings please visit SLCmixers.com.