Brook trout is a local fish California that has a very fresh, delicate flavor and silky, tender texture. All the ingredients in this recipe are at their peak this time of year, as well. I love that I can take fresh simple ingredients and use them in slightly different ways, and create something that looks and tastes elevated.
Swap option: Nastrium leaves can be swapped out for upland cress; brook trout can be substituted with any other sustainable flat fish fillet or small salmon fillet; variegated lemon can be swapped out for regular lemon and trout roe can be swapped out for salmon roe.
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1½ pounds asparagus, trimmed, chopped
- Salt, to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 6 4-ounce fillets ocean trout, skin and pin bones removed
- 1/2 pound asparagus, small dice
- 1 cup fresh small nasturtium leaves, stemmed, plus more for garnish
- 1 variegated lemon, segmented and diced small
- 2 tablespoons trout roe
For the asparagus puree:
Heat large nonstick sauté pan over medium heat. Add 2 teaspoons oil and asparagus and sauté about 8 minutes, or until bright green and beginning to caramelize.
Transfer to blender and puree until smooth. Gradually blend in enough remaining oil to form a smooth and creamy puree. Season with salt. Refrigerate until cold.
For the trout:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
Lightly coat trout filets all over with some oil. Lay trout skin-side up on prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt. Bake for 4-5 minutes, or until trout is just opaque but still moist and juicy.
For the asparagus-nasturtium relish:
1. Meanwhile, heat large nonstick sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add asparagus and sauté about 3 minutes, or until bright green and beginning to caramelize. Add nasturtium leaves and toss until beginning to wilt. Remove pan from heat and fold in lemon pieces. Season with salt.
2. Using two spoons, form asparagus puree into oval shapes (quenelles), setting two quenelles on each plate as they're formed. Repeat to form asparagus-nasturtium relish into quenelles and set one quenelle on each plate.
3. Carefully, peel off skin from trout filets and arrange one fillet on each plate. Garnish with roe and nasturtium leaves.