As a recreational fish it’s illegal to sell brown trout in New Zealand, which means that the only way to get one for dinner is to catch it yourself. If you don’t have the patience to stalk the rivers, you can substitute rainbow trout in this recipe.
- 1 small lemon, thinly sliced
- 1 whole brown or rainbow trout, cleaned
- ½ small onion, thinly sliced
- 80 g butter, softened
- 125 ml (½ cup) cider
- flat-leaf parsley leaves, to serve
- 20 g butter
- 50 g speck or pancetta, cut into batons
- 1 small onion, cut into 5 mm pieces
- 1 small carrot, cut into 5 mm pieces
- 1 celery stalk, cut into 5 mm pieces
- 400 g (2 cups) Puy (French green) lentils
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 litre chicken or vegetable stock
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
To make the braised lentils, melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the speck and cook for 3 minutes, stirring, until lightly browned. Add the onion, carrot and celery and cook for about 5 minutes until slightly softened. Add the lentils to the pan, and stir to coat in the mixture. Add the bay leaf and stock, bring to the boil, then simmer for 15-20 minutes until the lentils are just tender. Add water to the pan if it starts to look dry during cooking.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C. Lay two large pieces of foil on a flat surface and place a few lemon slices in the centre. Place the fish on top of the lemon and stuff the fish with the onion and some more lemon slices. Place the remaining lemon slices on top. Season the fish with sea salt. Place knobs of butter on top of and inside the cavity of the fish. Start to fold the foil into a parcel and pour in the cider, then tightly enclose the fish with the foil. Place the fish onto a large baking tray and roast in the oven for 15 minutes or until the fish is just cooked through.
Transfer the lentils to a serving platter. Carefully unwrap the fish and place on top of the lentils. Drizzle with the buttery cider sauce and garnish with parsley leaves to serve.