Here are some ideas for using smoked trout as a basis for some quick and easy meals.
SMOKED TROUT PÂTÉ‚
Mash the flesh of 250g of smoked trout fillets with 100g of cream cheese and the juice of half a lemon. You can use a food processor to make a smooth pâté‚ if you prefer. Season with cayenne pepper for a bite, or curry powder for an eastern flavour. Serve with toast or crusty bread.
SMOKED TROUT SALAD
Boil or steam new potatoes, halve or quarter and mix with six parts crème fraîche to one part horseradish sauce. Combine with salad greens such as rocket, young spinach, watercress, etc. Break smoked trout into chunks over the top.
Add flakes of smoked trout, crème fraîche, the juice and zest of a lemon and black pepper and fold together. Cook you favourite pasta, drain and return to the cooking pan. Add the trout mixture, toss and heat thoroughly heat through. Garnish with chopped parsley.
Oven bake or microwave your potato. When your potato is cooked, fold together chunks of smoked trout fillet, sour cream, chopped chives and a squeeze of lemon juice. Fill the baked potato with the mixture.
KEDGEREE (QUICK RECIPE) - there's a full recipe for Kedgeree further on
Prepare the same mixture as above for the baked potato and put to one side. Chop up a few spring onions and sauté‚ them in a little butter. Add a teaspoonful each of cumin and coriander. Alternatively use two teaspoonfuls of mild curry powder. Add 400g of basmati rice and 700ml of hot chicken stock (from a cube is easiest). Cover and simmer until cooked - about 20 minutes. Now stir in the trout mixture and serve. If you wish, you can also hard boil a couple of eggs, cool, shell and quarter them and add to the finished meal.
Here's a nice breakfast alternative.
SMOKED TROUT OMELETTE
(FOR 2 PEOPLE)
Smoked salmon/trout - 50g broken into chunks
Eggs - 2
Watercress - small bunch
Sea Salt - a pinch
Black Pepper - a pinch
Olive oil - 1tsp
Crack the eggs into a bowl a beat with a fork until smooth. Season with the salt and pepper and stir in any herbs you would like to use, such as basil or coriander (just a pinch will do). Heat a non-stick frying pan and add the oil. When the oil is hot add the egg mixture. Using a spatula and working in a circular motion, move the egg mixture around in the pan while tilting the pan back and forth across the heat. Cook until golden brown underneath but still slightly soft and clear on top. Place the fish chunks and watercress on half the omelette before folding over the other half to cover the fish and watercress. Cook for another minute and then serve immediately.
The recipe for kedgeree is usually made with haddock but smoked trout or salmon is a little firmer and more flavourful. Here are a couple of suggestions.
Smoked trout fillets - 200g, boned and flaked
Red Onion - 1, finely chopped
Garlic - 1 clove finely chopped
Fresh ginger - 2cm piece peeled and grated
Curry powder - 1tsp
Long grain rice - 250g
Olive oil - 1tbsp
Butter - 25g
Chicken stock - 500ml (or plain water if you've run out)
Hard boiled eggs - 3, quartered
Fresh coriander leaves - 1 handful
Cucumber - half a stick, sliced
Heat the oil and butter in a saucepan over a medium heat and add the onion and a good pinch of salt. Cook for 8 - 10 minutes until soft. Add the garlic, ginger and curry powder and cook for a further 2 minutes. Add the rice to the saucepan and stir around to coat with the oil. Add the stock (or water) and bring to the boil, immediately turning the heat down to a simmer. Put the lid on the saucepan and cook for about 15 minutes, until all the liquid has been absorbed.
Remove from the heat and gently stir in the flakes of smoked trout. When serving, top each plate with a few quarters of boiled egg and some coriander leaves. Offer the lime and cucumber as a side dish.
Basmati Rice - 350g
Eggs - 4
Fennel Seeds – 1 tbsp
Cumin Seeds - 1½tsp
Turmeric - ¼ tsp
Chilli Powder - ¼ tsp
Butter - 50g
Hot Smoked Salmon - 350g skinned and roughly flaked
Parsley – 4 tbsp chopped
Lemon - 1 - zest and juice only
Put the rice and 600ml of water into a medium sized saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 7-8 minutes until all the water has been absorbed and the rice is just tender. Stir with a fork to loosen the grains.
Place the eggs in a small pan of simmering water for 7-8 minutes. Drain, remove the shells and quarter the eggs. Dry-fry half the fennel and cumin seeds in a frying pan over a medium heat for 1 minute until the fragrance is released. Stir in the turmeric and the chilli powder and then finely grind with a pestle and mortar.
Put the butter in a wok with the remaining fennel and cumin seeds and the ground spices. Heat gently until the butter is melted. Add the rice and gently stir-fry for 2-3 minutes until heated through. Add the remaining ingredients, folding through the rice for another 1-2 minutes. Serve immediately.
Here’s a recipe to use your smoked salmon or trout in a hot pie.
SMOKED SALMON/TROUT & POTATO PIE (FOR 6 PEOPLE)
Smoked salmon/trout - 450g broken into chunks
Potatoes - floury type - 1.8k
Butter - 50g plus a little extra to grease the dish
Single cream - 284ml
Hot horseradish sauce - 1tbsp
Grain mustard - 1tbsp
Flat leaf parsley - a handful coarsely chopped
Bring a pan of unsalted water to the boil. Don't bother peeling the potatoes - just cut them into 5cm thick slices and boil for about 5 minutes. We don't want them fully cooked. Now put the butter and cream in a pan and heat gently until the butter melts. Remove from heat and add the horseradish and mustard.
Butter a shallow roasting dish and place a layer of the potato slices over the base. Season with a shake of salt and scatter over half the chopped parsley. Next add a layer of half the fish pieces and then a second layer of potatoes. After scattering the rest of the parsley, layer on the rest of the fish and then a final layer of potato.
Pour over the cream and horseradish mix, covering the top of the pie evenly. Season the top of the pie and then pop it in the oven at 180C/Gas 4 for 50 minutes. Check towards the end that the top does not brown too much.
This recipe will require hot and cold smoked trout, so you might need to cheat and buy the cold smoked fish at the store. It requires no cooking but should be chilled overnight.
DOUBLE SMOKED TROUT PÂTÉ‚ WITH HORSERADISH (FOR 8)
Cold smoked trout - sliced, about 150g
Hot smoked trout fillets - 4, about 250g in total
Cucumber - ½
Full fat cream cheese - 200g
Tabasco sauce - 4 drops
Chives - small bunch, snipped
Pepper - freshly ground
Lemon wedges - 8
Lamb's lettuce - 170g bag
Salad dressing vinaigrette
Creamed horseradish - up to 1 tbsp (depending on strength)
Line a 20cm round sandwich tin with kitchen film and cover the base of the lined tin with a single layer of the cold smoked trout slices. Using a potato peeler, peel the skin off the cucumber, slice it in half lengthways and scrape out the seeds with a spoon and dice the cucumber finely.
Place the cream cheese and half the hot smoked trout fillets into a food processor and whizz until smooth. No processor? Chop half the hot trout fillets finely with a knife and mix with the cream cheese in a bowl until a smooth paste. Either way, place the smooth paste into a bowl and roughly flake the remaining trout and fold it in, together with the diced cucumber, horseradish, Tabasco, chives and some black pepper. Season if necessary.
Spoon the pâté‚ into the tin and level the top. Cover with kitchen film and place in the fridge to firm up overnight. 1 hour before serving turn out onto a platter and place in the freezer. This will make it easier to slice. To serve, cut into 16 wedges and place 2 wedges crossways beside some dressed lettuce on individual plates.
That's all the smoked fish recipes. Before we get to the other hot recipes here is something a little different - but before you start, remember that the next two recipes take two days to be ready to serve.
CURED TROUT WITH EGG AND SHALLOTS
Salmon/trout fillets in pairs - skin on, about 750g each (larger fish are good)
Dark Muscovado sugar - 2 tbsp
Sea salt - 3 tbsp
Whole white peppercorns - 1 tsp
English mustard powder - 1tsp
Caraway seeds - 1 tsp
Brown bread - good and fresh
Hard boiled eggs - 2
Shallots - 2 medium rinsed and finely chopped
Toast the caraway seeds in a pan until the smell is pleasing. Then place them in a mortar with the peppercorns and grind until medium fine (use an electric grinder if preferred). Tip into a small bowl and add the salt, sugar and mustard powder and mix well.
Lay a fillet of trout, skin side down in a non-stick roasting tin, or similar glass or plastic dish. Pack the curing mix over the exposed surface - you don't need so much mix on the thinner tail end. Lay the other fillet skin side up on top of the first fillet to make a sandwich with the mix in the middle. Spread cling film over the fish and put a small chopping board or similar on top of that, with two dinner plates on top to add weight. This weight will gently squeeze the juices out of the fillets. Place in the lower part of your fridge.
Twice a day remove the weights and cling film and open the sandwich. Spoon any juices that have accumulated over the pink flesh and turn the fillets over so the bottom one is now on top and vice versa. Close it back up, put the weights and cling film back and return to the fridge. Repeat twice a day for two days.
Once cured - the fish will keep for a week - open the sandwich and use kitchen towel to pat off any residual juices. To serve treat as smoked salmon, placing the fillet on a chopping board and slice very thinly from the tail end. Hold the knife at a very shallow angle to the fish and slice in long thin slivers. Arrange the slices on a plate and serve with very lightly toasted triangles of bread, grated hardboiled egg, shallots and crème fraîche.
This is a method of dry curing salmon or trout with herbs (usually dill) together with sugar, salt and pepper. It is then sliced, on the slant to serve.
1 whole fresh salmon - about two kilos - filleted to make 2 sides
Dried dill - 4 tbsp
Caster sugar - 4 tbsp
Coarse sea salt - 2 tbsp
Black pepper - ground
Dill - fresh sprigs
Lay the two fillets out on a board, skin side down. Sprinkle both fillets with the dried dill, lots of black pepper, the sugar and the salt, pressing each ingredient well into the flesh.
Lay one of the fillets on top of the other like a sandwich, both with the skin side outwards, then wrap them in a double thickness of kitchen foil and place in a large polythene bag sealing it tight. Place the package on a large dish and put another large dish on top of the package. This top plate should then be weighted with kitchen weights or other heavy objects such as some unopened cans. Put the whole lot in the fridge for 24 hours to marinate, turning the package over after 12 hours.
After 24 hours remove the fillets from the package and discard the liquid which will have accumulated. Separate the fillets and serve on a plate, slicing away from the skin at an angle of 45 degrees. Each slice should be a little thicker than for smoked salmon slices and ensure that each sliced is edged with the dill.
This dish is served with a dill sauce made as follows:
Dijon mustard - 3 tbsp
Caster sugar - 2 tbsp
White wine vinegar - 1 tbsp
Egg yolk - 1
Sunflower oil - 150 ml
Dill - fresh, chopped - 2 tbsp or if using dried dill - 1 tbsp
Coarse sea salt
Black pepper - ground
To make the sauce, whisk together the mustard, sugar, vinegar, and egg yolk. Gradually whisk in the oil until the sauce has the consistency of mayonnaise. Finally, season with the salt and pepper to taste and stir in the dill.
HOME CURED SALMON/TROUT WITH MUSTARD SAUCE
Salmon/trout 2 fillets - skin on - 900g
Rock salt - 100g
caster sugar - 100g
Yellow mustard seeds - 20g
Dill - fresh 20g bunch finely chopped
Dill - chopped - 2 tbsp (yes - more dill)
Make sure you use the thickest parts of the fillets. Ideally you should use two heavy cast iron dishes that fit inside each other. Alternatively, use a couple of unopened tin cans for weights. Lay out a piece of kitchen film large enough to wrap up the two fillets when placed on top of each other. Combine the curing ingredients - apart from the 2 tbsp of dill - in a bowl and separate into four portions.
Scatter one portion of the mixture over the kitchen film. Place one salmon/trout fillet skin down on the curing mixture, and scatter two portions of the mixture over the flesh. Lay the second fillet on top flesh side down, making sure that the thick part of this fillet lays on the thin part of the lower fillet. Scatter the remaining portion of mixture on the exposed skin of the top fillet. Wrap the fillets in the kitchen film and then wrap again in foil.
Place the parcel inside the larger cast iron dish and place the smaller dish on top. Weight the top with tin cans if necessary. Place in the refrigerator and chill for 48 hours, turning the parcel upside down every twelve hours. The curing process draws the juices out of the fish to produce a sticky brine.
After the time has elapsed unwrap the parcel and rinse the flesh side, removing any excess salt and sugar. Allow some of the mustard seeds and dill to remain. Place the fillets skin side down on a work surface and place kitchen towel over each fillet to absorb any excess liquid. Press the extra 2 tbsp of chopped dill into the flesh.
Trim the ends of the fillets and slice the cured fish diagonally off the skin using thicker slices than you would for smoked salmon. Discard the ends which will be too briny. Serve with mustard sauce, made as follows -
Sour cream - 150g
Dijon mustard - 1 rounded tbsp
Grainy mustard - 1 rounded tbsp
Caster sugar - 1 scant tbsp
Simply blend all the ingredients in a bowl. Leave to stand for ten minutes to allow the sugar to dissolve and the flavours to infuse. Stir again and serve.
Finally, in this section, a recipe for sashimi.
SOY-CURED SALMON SASHIMI WITH MINTED APPLE AND CUCUMBER SALAD (SERVES 4)
Salmon fillet - 200g - skin still on
Caster sugar - unrefined - 1tsp (or 2tsp mirin for real authenticity)
Light or Japanese soy sauce - 100ml
Lemon juice - 3tbsp
Apple - 1 - crisp such as Golden Delicious or Granny Smith
Cucumber - 6cm length, peeled
Grainy mustard - 2tsp
Honey - the runny type - 1tsp
Extra virgin olive oil - 1tsp
Fresh mint leaves - 6-8
Remove any pin bones from the salmon and then sit it in a dish that will just hold it. Dissolve the sugar in the soy and add 1 tbsp of the lemon juice, pouring the mixture over the salmon so that the fish is almost covered. Leave for 10 minutes and then turn the salmon in the dish. Repeat this operation another three times, leaving 10 minutes each time. Remove from the marinade, pat dry, cover with cling film and place in the fridge where it will keep for up to two days.
Cut the apple and cucumber into strips, toss with 1 tbsp of the lemon juice and place this in the fridge too. Mix the last of the lemon juice with mustard and honey and stir to dissolve the honey. Mix in the olive oil and a little salt to taste.
Slice the salmon into reasonably thick pieces, removing the skin and place each on a small, chilled plate. Drain the juices from the apple salad, tear the mint leaves and add them to the salad. Pile the salad on the salmon, give the dressing a final stir and drizzle over just before serving.