Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Steelhead Trout with Brown Butter and Pecans

Crisp Greens with Apples, Grapes, and Apple Cider-Maple Vinaigrette

Steelhead Trout with Brown Butter and Pecans

Mixed Vegetable Hash Browns

I totally forgot to put the brown butter and pecans on the trout until I'd put it in front of my Pootie Pie and walked back in the kitchen and saw it on the stove. At least I made it in time for eating, if not pictures.

The salad was a favorite of mine - I love the apple/pecan/grape combination, and the apple-cider vinaigrette is perfect for fall.

It's just green leaf lettuce, chopped apples and grapes, whole toasted pecans, and just a little feta cheese. Goat would be better, but I'm out. The dressing is 1 Tbs. maple syrup, 3 Tbs. apple cider vinegar, a generous pinch of salt, a few grinds of black pepper, and about 4 Tbs. salad oil and 1/2 Tbs. walnut oil.

My dad used to trout fish on the Spring River in Arkansas. Rainbow, not Steelhead, obviously. I went with him a few times. He caught a few good-size ones. I can remember eating a decent amount of trout almondine growing up. I was not a fan. I know, I appreciation for the finer things in life, like fresh-caught river trout. I preferred salmon croquettes, made from canned salmon. Go figure. Speaking of salmon, this trout was very salmon-like. Same color and even smelled similar. I'm used to trout being much paler and milder. It kind of lost its salmony-ness (yeah, it's a word - look it up) once it was grilled. For the topping, I browned some butter on low heat in a pan, added just a touch of maple syrup, then put in some crunchy toasted pecans and drizzled the lot over the trout. It got a lot of mmmmms from Pootie so I'm assuming it was good. Well, and I liked it, too.

The vegetable hash browns were also tasty, and fun to make. I grated two parsnips, two carrots, one russet potato, and half a sweet potato. I set the russet potato aside to drain on paper towels for about 45 minutes - they need to be dry for this. Then I mixed the lot together with a couple tablespoons of flour, a teaspoon of pepper, salt and nutmeg, and three eggs. Mix it all up with your hands - go on, get in there! Hands are the best tool you got for this. Wash them first.

Especially if you have Steamboat for a helper. Well, come on. You can't deny him a few head pats when he's that cute! Not that I'm biased or anything.

Then drop little fingerfuls of them into hot olive oil in a pan. Medium heat - you don't want them cooking too fast since the carrots and parsnips take a little longer. Go until they're browned on each side.

It took long enough that I drew an audience. Dinky is trying to be unobtrusive so I won't notice him. And fervently hoping I drop something edible on the floor. I didn't. (This time.)

I had a good number of the little hash browns leftover, and figure they'll be excellent with some turkey sausage and eggs for breakfast. Oo! And some maple apples! Since I'm writing this blog in the AM, I may need to get on that after my workout.

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