ladies, i highly recommend marrying a fisherman. in my experience, at least, they are handsome, charming, sweet, and funny, and top of all of that they will bring home beautiful fresh fish for you to cook up. and then heap praise on you for doing so. it's a pretty sweet life.
sam and i spent the weekend in connecticut, meeting with our florist and hitting thrift stores to find serving ware for the wedding. i hit the cloche JACKPOT and got like four of them for $12, plus a bunch of old glass jars that will be great for flowers. but while i slept in until 10 am both days, sam got up early and brought home dinner.
sam had a great trout cookbook he'd picked up at a goodwill along the way, so i adapted this recipe from it and made it for us last night:
trout and fennel cream with pate a choux
for the pate a choux:
1/4 cup of butter
1/2 cup of water
a heaping 1/2 cup of ap flour
about 2 ounces of grated gruyere, plus more for sprinkling
2 eggs, beaten
preheat the oven to 350.
start a large pot with the butter and water on medium heat. once melted, add your flour and stir stir stir, until it's dried a lot and there's a film on the bottom of the pan. let it cool for a couple of minutes and then dump in the cheese and stir, then the eggs little by little until they're totally absorbed. take a 10 inch dinner plate (or other round thing) and trace it on a piece of parchment paper; flip it and use a stick of butter to attach it to a cookie sheet. put the choux in a piping bag and pipe it onto the circle. sprinkle with the rest of the cheese, and put it in the oven to cook for 20-25 minutes (until the underside is well browned.)
trout & fennel cream filling
(the original recipe called for watercress in place of the arugula and fennel, but i didn't have any so i just subbed what i had. [and it was awesome.])
2/3 cup of wine
1/3 cup of water
4 parsley stalks, chopped
2 bay leaves
one trout (ours was about 18 inches and rainbow)
put all ingredients in a saucepan with high walls and poach the fish for a few minutes on each side until it's fully cooked. strain the liquid and save it; put the fish on a cutting board and peel back the skin and use the fork to remove the meat. repeat on the other side. discard bones & skin.
2 T butter
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 cup of flour
reserved liquid from poaching
2/3 cup of milk
1/4 cup of heavy cream
2 oz grated gruyere
about 1/3 cup of chopped fennel
about 1/2 cup of raw arugula
salt & pepper to taste
start the butter in a saucepan; add the onion and cook until soft. add the flour and stir to coat it with the stove on medium-low heat. add the poaching liquid and stir; it should start to get creamy. add the trout and stir, then add the milk slowly, stirring all the while, then finally the cream. once it's been reduced and is good and thick and no liquid remains, turn the heat to very low and check on the pate a choux ring (it should be done, or close to it.) take it out and let it cool for a few minutes before slicing it in half and cleaning out the soft dough in the middle. take the trout mixture off the stove and add in the cheese, arugula, and fennel. season to taste and then spoon into the pate a choux and top with the other half. voila! it's tricky to cut but DELICIOUS.
i came straight from connecticut to work this morning, so i'm a bit bleary and wearing some new thrifted duds from this weekend - more from me soon!