We went to Sam's to buy the ingredients to make cat food. And, we needed fruit for the bridesmaid's brunch I'm doing for my niece, Samantha. I'd found a couple of great new recipes so wanted baby back ribs and a whole chicken. Well, they were out of whole chickens. Even though it was Saturday, by the time I escaped the office and got home and we were ready to leave for Sam's it was 6:30. I figured salmon on the grill was the best solution for dinner. Right next to the salmon was a package of steelhead trout fillets. I asked Connie if he'd ever had steelhead trout and he said he'd not. I'd not ever had it either. Time for an adventure.
On the way home we chatted about which cookbook was most likely to have a great recipe to get us started. Ray's Boathouse was the hands down winner in our minds. Followed closely by Legal Seafoods. He unloaded the car, I headed for the bookshelf with the cookbooks from restaurants. How much fun is that? Great memories of wonderful places we've eaten. Terrific meals. Lots of love and laughter. But, alas, not a single trout recipe in the Ray's Boathouse cookbook. And the Legal Seafoods one just wouldn't work. Hmph! On to the barbecue shelves. Yes, shelves. I love barbecue. Grilling. That's why we grill when it's zero degrees. We love it. At my old house, I kept a grill under the overhang of the garage. I'd stand out there in the snow and a down coat and grill. Now, fortunately, we have a screened porch. The grill is on that. Lots more pleasant!
Bobby Flay. Nope. Steve Raichlen. Nope. Five other grilling cookbooks. Nope. I was about to give up and spied Sublime Smoke by Cheryl and Bill Jamison. A cookbook that I've owned for years but had yet to use. On the other hand, their Smoke and Spice cookbook is one of my top ten most used cookbooks. It's fantastic. Bingo. Three great trout recipes. The only problem was that they all required 2-3 hours to cook and it was approaching 8 pm. So, I went with the quickest - which still wasn't very quick. But, guess what. We still had to put away all the stuff from Sam's. The kitchen needed some TLC. And, it was Saturday evening. Nobody was going to get on our case if we ate VERY fashionably late at 10 pm!
What did we think? We loved the smoked trout.
The potatoes could have used earlier herbs. And, maybe a tad more half and half. When I reheated everything for brunch, I added a poached egg to each serving. And, I warmed up the potatoes with a bit of half and half whisked with some dijon mustard. We actually liked the leftovers better than the original dish.
3/4 lb skin-on trout fillets
2 t Dijon mustard
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 T butter
1 1/2 T olive oil
1 lb Yukon gold potatoes, cubed
1 medium red onion, diced
1/4 c half and half
2 t Dijon mustard
3 T minced fresh chives
3 T minced fresh parsley
1 1/2 T minced fresh dill
Slather the trout with the dijon mustard.
Leave the skin on. Wrap it in plastic and leave it at room temp for 30 minutes.
Soak your smoking wood if necessary. We used shagbark hickory bark.
While the fish is resting, get ready for the hash. Cube the potatoes and dice the onion. Beat the egg and whisk in the dijon and half and half.
Start your smoker at about 25 minutes. Now, Connie looked up the directions on the Weber Grill site and it said to use just the smoker. We'd have eaten somewhere around the 4th of July if we'd used just the smoker. We wound up using the burners on each side of the fish fillet - all set to the lowest setting. We smoked with some of the shagbark hickory bark we buy at the farmers market from our friend, Gordon Jones. He's the guy who makes that wonderful shagbark hickory syrup. Put the fish fillet on the grill skin side down.
When you start smoking the fish, you can start the hash. Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the olive oil. Once the butter/olive oil mixture is bubbling, add the potatoes and onion.
Cook on medium heat until the onions are nicely browned - about 20 minutes.
Stir in the egg mixture and the herbs.
Cook for 5-10 more minutes.
Serve topped with the smoked trout.
NB: The recipe called for mixing the trout into the potato mixture and cooking it for 5 more minutes. When we took the trout off the grill it was perfectly cooked. I wasn't going to overcook it by mixing it with the potatoes and continuing to cook it.
The next morning, I turned the leftovers into brunch by topping the hash with a poached egg - or two in Connie's case. The trout was mixed with the potato mixture and I heated it up with a bit more half and half and dijon mustard. It was even better the second day!
adapted from Sublime Smoke