Lunchbreak: Smoked trout spread

Amelia Levin is a Chicago-based food writer, chef and cookbook author - The Lake Michigan Cottage Cookbook


The Lake Michigan Cottage Cookbook

Book Signing at Bookends & Beginnings

Monday, June 18, 6:30 p.m., 1712 Sherman Avenue, Alley #1, Evanston, IL 60201. No cost. Amelia will provide some samples and the event is BYO.


Smoked Trout or White Fish Spread
With trout populations in the Great Lakes dwindling over the years, most lake trout now comes from Canada and sometimes Lake Superior. However, local smokehouses like Charlie's Smokehouse in Ellison Bay and Schwartz Fish Company in Sturgeon Bay still do their part to make that fish even more delicious. Maple syrup helps balance out the smokiness in this spread, which tastes delicious on grilled bread or even buttery crackers.

PREP TIME: 10 minutes
COOKING TIME: 10 minutes
CHILLING TIME: 30 minutes

Serves 8

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup minced shallot or sweet onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
8 ounces skinless, boneless smoked trout or white fish, broken into large chunks
1 teaspoon maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2/3 cup creme fraiche or sour cream
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Grilled or toasted thinly sliced country bread, for serving
Watercress, for serving

1. Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the shallot and garlic and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the trout, maple syrup, and pepper flakes, and cook until the fish is heated through, about 1 minute. Transfer to a food processor and let cool completely. Cover and pulse until coarsely
chopped. Add the crème fraîche and lemon zest. Cover and pulse until well combined.

2. Transfer to a serving dish, cover, and refrigerate until chilled, about 30 minutes. Serve with grilled bread and watercress. The spread may be made ahead and refrigerated overnight.

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