Well, you were having so much fun catching them that you totally forgot that pellet-fed, round-tailed hatchery trout are about as tasty as a wet sock. Now, damn, you’ve got a pile of them and aren’t sure what to do. But wait! Before you plant the mushy biscuit eaters in the garden, there just may be a way to make even these things palatable.
Wild game cooking guru Scott “The Sporting Chef” Leysath shows you how…
Smoked Trout Spread with Jalapeno
“First off, fillet the trout,” he says. “You can leave the skin on if you like – or take it off if you’re so inclined. Next, take equal parts kosher salt and brown sugar and rub both sides of the fish with it. Place the fish in a Zip-Loc in the fridge for 3 to 8 hours.”
After that, he says you place the fish on a rack to air dry for 30 minutes.
“Next, pop the fish into a 140- to 160-degree smoker for 2 to 3 hours,” he says. “You can use whatever kind of smoker you want, but the best one I’ve ever used is a Bradley. They’re electric and, because a smoker disc automatically goes in every 20 minutes, you get very consistent results. Set the thing and walk away…done!”
When the fish is done smoking, flake up two cups of it and then, in a mixing bowl, combine the trout with the following ingredients:
• 8 Ounces softened cream cheese
• 4 minced garlic cloves
• ¼ Cup finely diced red onion
• 3 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves (or substitute with Italian parsley leaves)
• 1 Teaspoon Tabasco Sauce (or to taste)
• 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
“After you’ve mixed all these ingredients together, add salt and pepper to taste,” he says. “Then thinly slice some jalapeno pepper for garnish and dollop the spread onto tortilla chips.”