Trout is a delicious fish and needs minimal treatment to make a delicious dish.
My supermarket had whole fresh trout the other day which were really reasonably priced, and I bought a couple on the weekend, for a quick and easy supper, which looks like it took far longer than the 30 minutes it did to rustle up.
I asked the fishmonger to leave the trout whole, simple scaling it. When you buy fresh fish whole, make sure the eyes are still shining and not dull and the skin is also glistening. Always check with your fishmonger what day the fish came in and, if you are able to, smell the fish. It should not have any odour: if it smells fishy, well then it is, and it’s not fresh.
Trout, incidentally, freezes very well, especially the larger trout and they are easy to fillet once cooked. After gently pulling off the skin you simply run your knife down the centre of each side and pull away the flesh from the central spinal bone.
Trout is great on the braai and also poached in white wine with a few bay leaves or basil leaves and lemon grass thrown in.
Grilled trout with a prawn and butter cream parsley sauce and potato rosti
Two small trout (about 200g each)
150 g shelled deveined prawns
Half a cup cream
1 handful finely chopped flat leaf parsley
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
For the rosti
4 medium potatoes, grated and water squeezed out
salt and black pepper
Make the rosti before the fish: simply mix the grated potatoes with the egg and the seasoning to taste and place in a flat oiled oven dish, pressing down the mixture.
Bake for about 20 minutes in a medium oven until the top is browned.
While the rosti is baking, rinse the trout and pat dry and do the same with the prawns.
Put two or three thin lemon wedges in the cavity of each trout and a few leaves of fresh herbs.
Fry the prawns and garlic in butter, then add the parsley and the cream, and salt and pepper.
Put the trout under the grill and cook for about five minutes on each side, making sure you don’t overcook it.
To assemble, skin the trout and gently ladle the prawns over each one and serve each portion with a wedge of the potato rosti and a thick slice of fresh lemon.