Pan-Fried Brook and Rainbow Trout

15. March 2007 Fish 0

It felt like spring, so imagine how perplexed I was when I saw that there were only a few tents set up in the farmers’ market. I suppose if the market was crowded, I would have missed the group of men gathered around a small table. Men? Shopping? I squeezed myself in just as the last smoked trout was bought, but saw that there were still some fresh fish inside the giant coolers. Dave Harris of Max Creek Hatchery told me that his fish were still swimming until 7pm the previous night. He introduced me to the rainbow trout which had some purple tints on its scales, and to the brook trout which had some yellow polka-dots. He told me he prefers the brook trout, but both were very pretty that I ended up buying them to cook and compare during dinner.

Ooh, pretty, was the Dr.’s reaction when I told him over the phone that I bought trout from the market. He loves to fish and he loves eating them even more, and trout was what he was pining for when we were driving past the river in Oregon. When he came over, he brought with him a bottle of a 2006 Sauvignon Blanc Semillon Australian wine. We drank while he got to work: he put a sliver of butter inside each of the fish with some garlic cloves. He lightly coated them with flour and sprinkled them with salt and pepper. He fried them in hot oil until they were both golden brown and crispy. With some of the leftover frying oil, he sautéed some mushrooms in a skillet and tossed them with arugula and rice wine vinegar dressing. I was surprised that the brook trout tasted like salmon. Its meat was orange and sweet. The rainbow trout was like any fried white fish–a little less exciting but would have been great with green mango salad.

1 fresh brook trout, cleaned
1 fresh rainbow trout, cleaned
half a stick of butter, thinly sliced
1 cup of flour
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
salt, pepper, frying oil

1. Insert garlic and butter in trout’s cavity. Season the inside of the fish with salt and pepper. Combine flour, salt and pepper and coat trout.
2. In a skillet, heat oil and fry trout until golden brown on one side. Use tongs to gently turn and cook the other side until golden brown, too. Do not cover. Remove each each fish to a plate lined with paper towel when cooked.

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Union Square Greenmarket