Quick Smoke Trout

Some people only catch a cold when they’re fishing. Others catch a meal. M A Logan

TroutIs quick smoking a trout difficult? No, quick-smoke can mean exactly that. You can do the dish around 45 minutes. And, to prove it here are some step-by-step instructions on how to do the job.

First, fillet your fish

Quick Smoke filleted troutTo start the ball rolling you need a trout. In my case it was exactly that. A 3 pound trout on a plate. To save time you can, of course, pop into your local fish shop and buy what you need. Don’t forget to use tweezers to remove any bones. Rub your fingers over the flesh lightly with one hand and pluck out the bones you find.

Having filleted fish before, I set to work. Filleting is fairly simple, I’m sure you can find excellent instruction elsewhere around the Internet. If you get stuck, contact me.

Make your marinade liquor

Quck Smoke - 2 filletsOfficially this would probably be called marinade. However as good scotch whisky is part of the recipe, I’m thinking of it as a liquor. For two robust fillets (8-10 oz each), the ingredients are:

  • 4 tbsp of Scotch
  • 2 tbsp of Muscovado (dark unrefined) sugar
  • 1.5 tsp of salt
  • 1 tiring grind of black pepper

Quick Smoke liquored filletsFind an old cup, Chuck the ingredients in and stir until there are no lumps of sugar left. Position your fillets, skin side up, on a suitable surface. Using a teaspoon, put dollops of the liquor on each fillet and massage each one with the spoon base to smooth the mixture. Add an even coating to your fillets. It’s worth noting that spaces will open up in the flakes of the ish which allow you to work the mixture into it. Let it stand for 10 to 15 minutes.

Prepare to cook

In your shoes, I’d find a large pot roasting tin. I didn’t have one, So I used a roasting tin. That meant I’d need strong  cooking foil. If you look at the picture you can see I had to take care working some strong foil into the corners of my roasting tin. When I had done that, I added my smoking mixture:

  • 4 tsp of loose Assam tea
  • 1 tsp of white sugar

Sprinkle these equally around the bottom of the pan on the foil. Please note, it is important to keep the foil as flat to the pan bottom as possible without resorting to nails, glue or any other daft ideas you may have.

Quick smoked fillets before smokingGet the trout fillets aboard

Hold it, be sure to oil the metal of the grill or platform the trout will lie on, then it won’t stick. Unlike steaming, where you will lay fish on a plate, the aim is to expose the fillets to the heat and smoke. You can see the idea from the picture. In this case my fillets were too large. I cut pieces off the tail and placed them as shown.

With your platform ready, lay your fish carefully for smoking. In an ideal world I would have had a better platform, however, as cooking proved, the setup was more than adequate.

Quick smoke ready to heatSeal everything in foil

Take your time, don’t tear your foil (like I did). Now you’re ready to quick-smoke your fish.

Quick smoke your fish

Put your roasting tin on alarge gas ring or a barbecue. If you’re confident you can do it using electrical means, that’s up to you. Whatever, apply high heat for around 5 to 7 minutes. There will be smoke, hopefully not too much. After the high heat, go as low as you can for around 10 minutes. Then turn the heat off and leave everything alone for 15 minutes. When the time is up you’ll have some fantastic fish to eat.

Quick smoke fillets after cookingEnjoy

In our Scottish way, we ate our trout with plain-cooked potatoes, carrots and fresh peas. We had a little hollandaise on the side and, next time I do this, I’ll use a horseradish cream. We shared a bottle of Sicilian white wine with this meal. YUM.

For those of you who like a gourmet name for food, call this: Whisky and Muscovado Tea Smoked Trout.

© Mac Logan