Sunday, 2 May 2010

Rainbow in the Dark (foil-baked rainbow trout with lemon, dill and butter)

Rainbow trout is brilliant. It's cheap, widely available, tasty, healthy and easy to cook. You can get a whole fish, which will serve up to two people depending on the size, for just a couple of quid, and the delicate flesh just melts in your mouth.

If you prefer you can use olive oil instead of butter, but personally I think you can't beat that luxurious buttery taste. This recipe is extremely easy, but because it's fish people will still think you've done something clever, which as we all know is the most important thing when cooking for others. Don't be confused by the apparent length of this recipe, it's actually very quick and easy to do.


* Garlic clove, smashed but unpeeled
* 2 x iceberg lettuce leaves
* 1 x large rainbow trout
* Salt and freshly ground black pepper
* A few generous knobs of butter
* Half a lemon, cut into slices as per the picture
* 4 x spring onions
* Handful of dill, or parsley if you prefer (or even both together - go on, you crazy fool!)

  1. Turn the oven on at 190 degrees.
  2. Get a fairly big sheet of kitchen foil, at least A 3 size, and lay the fish on top of it in the centre. Make sure you've got enough foil to wrap the fish fully.
  3. Having got your fishmonger to gut and scale the fish, chop the annoying fins off and make small slits about 1.5cm apart on the skin on each side of the fish - don't cut right through though. You'll want an extremely sharp knife for this otherwise you'll just start hacking into the flesh with a sawing motion, which will rip the flesh up. It's probably not a good idea to listen to Raining Blood while you do this.
  4. Chop the spring onions finely. Season the fish inside the cavity and on each side, letting the salt and pepper get into the slits. Stuff the cavity with herbs, garlic, lemon slices (as many as will comfortably fit) and spring onions. Lay the remaining lemon slices on top of the fish and scatter some more dill over, then strategically place a few knobs of butter on top. Carefully wrap the fish until you have something that looks like a shiny cornish pasty, making sure that none of the liquid inside can escape. Put the parcel onto a baking tray and then into the oven for about 15-20 minutes, depending on the size of the fish.
  5. Wash and shred some iceberg lettuce leaves - I think they go well with the soft fish because they're nice and crispy, which provides a nice contrast in texture. Make a little "bed" for the fish on a plate.
  6. When the fish is cooked, unwrap the foil and gently peel the skin back using a spoon - this should be easy. You should notice a line going along the centre of the flesh. Now it's time for an all-out spoonfest - get a big spoon and a teaspoon. Insert the teaspoon on the aforementioned line and gently slide the flesh off the bones and onto the big spoon, then transfer the flesh to the lettuce bed. The flesh above the line should lift off very easily. There may be one or two stray bones here and there but nothing to lose sleep over.
  7. Pour the lemony buttery goodness from inside the foil over the dish. If you're a tart like me you can serve the lemon slices as a garnish.

No comments:

Post a Comment