Trout Season is a spring ritual in the Hudson Valley. What better way to enjoy trout, than to try your hand at smoking it and preserving it for later? This recipe is great with a salad of cucumbers, but it is versatile, so you can even add it to a bagel with cream cheese or toss it with some scrambled eggs for breakfast.
Prep Time: 20-30 minutes4| Cook Time: 7 to 10 minutes | Oven Temperature: 200F degrees | Special Equipment: Spice grinder | Yield: 4 filets
- 2 whole trout, filleted, skin on, pin bones removed
- 2 cups applewood chips
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 2 teaspoons mustard seed
- 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1 cup salt
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup dill, chopped
- 1/4 cup tarragon, chopped
- 1/4 cup thyme, chopped
- 1/2 bay leaf, chopped
Step by Step
- Grind the coriander, mustard seeds, pepper and fennel seeds in a spice grinder
- Next, combine this spice mixture with the salt and sugar in a small bowl
- Season the trout generously with the mixture
- Combine the chopped dill, tarragon, thyme and bay leaf in a small bowl
- Sprinkle the herbs over top of the trout
- Refrigerate the seasoned trout to let it “cure” for 8 hours
Farm2ChefsTable Tip: Place the trout on a non-reactive plate, such as glass or glazed ceramic.
- After the trout has cured, rinse the filets under cold running water to remove the seasoning
- Place the trout back on the non reactive plate and refrigerate overnight, unwrapped
Farm2ChefsTable Tip: This creates a “pellicle” on the surface of the meat so the smoke adheres better.
- In a medium bowl, soak the applewood chips in cold water for 10 minutes
- Adjust one oven rack as close to the heating element as possible, and move the other rack as far away from the heating element as possible
Farm2ChefsTable Tip: This is important, because one rack will hold the trout, which you want to cook at a very low temperature away. The other rack (closest to the heating element) will keep the smoke going.
- Preheat your oven to 200F degrees
- Once your wood chips are done soaking and the oven is preheated, preheat a large heavy-bottom pan on your stove over high heat
- Be sure to open the windows and turn on your exhaust fan because it’s going to get smoky
- Once the pan is preheated, add the soaked wood chips and begin to smoke them
- As you wait for the wood chips to start smoking, place the trout in a pan set over a pan of ice
- When the chips begin to smoke, move them to the rack closest to your oven’s heating element
- Next, move the trout (still on the pan) and ice pan to the rack furthest from the heating element
- Cook the trout until it is thoroughly done, about 7 to 10 minutes
Farm2ChefsTable Tip: Be sure the smoke is billowing as you cook the trout.