Andorra is a mountainous country and so the fish they have is trout. They traditionally cook it on a BBQ with thyme, lemon, and garlic. Well that won’t work for me as I live in an apartment and I don’t have a BBQ. So I see if they have another recipe for trout. It seems to be a bit elusive and I am tempted to just look for Catalana seafood. I finally stumble on Eric Ripert’s recipe. It turns out that he grew up in Andorra and did a cooking special of some of the dishes from Andorra and one dish he has is poached trout. That doesn’t sound authentic so with google translate I translate poached trout into Catalan and so calling this “Truita Escaldats”
You create a stock, or as he calls it: court-bouillon. So I’m a self taught cook and don’t really know what this is and have to look it up. It turns out it means a liquid for poaching. So, learned my new fact for the day!
I then add the fish and cook for 8 minutes. We test the fish is done, as Eric Ripert suggests, by poking a stick in the thickest part and if it is hot it is ready. I think it is hot my friend is not so sure. We try to take one out to test and it falls apart, so we think it is done.
Okay so I have actually never cooked a whole fish before. I have only done filets and not sure how to eat it and so watch a video. If my fish is cooked right it should be easy, and it turns out it is. First you take the tail and put a fork to start separating the two sides.
Continue to guide the fork to separate so that one of the sides has the bones.
When done you should have two filets one with bone in.
With a fork start to separate the skeleton from the fliet and gently pull. You may have a small few bones, but should take care of most of it.
Then to serve you make a butter sauce with some of the broth.
I also made a spinach salad to serve with the trout, which they call Espinacas a la Catalana. It is an extremely simple salad that you can make with raisins or currants. I’m not a huge fan of raisins so I want to do this with currants. However after the fourth grocery store with no currants, I give up and just get raisins.
I serve the meal with trntax as well.
The result is yummy. The trout is cooked perfectly and the sauce is buttery yum. I would have liked a hint of lemon and likely would add that in to the broth and then serve with a wedge. The Spinach salad is paired perfectly; simple and eloquent. The raisins don’t bother me and add a needed sweetness and the pine nuts are crunchy.
Original recipe can be found here
- 4 cups water
- 1/2 cup sherry vinegar
- 1 cup sliced spring onions
- 1 carrot, thinly sliced
- 1 celery rib, thinly sliced
- 2 thyme sprigs
- 4 (8-ounce) whole trout, cleaned
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- 7 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 lemons
- Place the water, sherry vinegar, spring onion, carrot, celery, 1 lemon sliced and thyme in a pot and bring to a simmer.Simmer for 10 minutes.
- Season the trout on the outside and in the belly with salt, pepper and a pinch of cayenne. Place in the pan and poach for 8 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the thickest part of the flesh comes out warm.
- Remove the fish with a slotted spoon and set aside on a warm platter. Strain the cooking liquid and return 1 cup to the pot. Bring to a boil and add the butter slowly, 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking constantly. Continue whisking until all the butter is absorbed. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
- To serve, place a trout on each plate and spoon the sauce over each. Serve immediately with a few lemon wedges
Espinacas a la Catalana
The original recipe can be found here
- 2 bunches fresh spinach
- 2 cloves garlic
- 3 tbsp pine nuts
- 3 tbsp dried currants or raisins
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Wash the spinach thoroughly under cold running water to remove all sand and debris. Trim off the stems.
- Steam the spinach for only 2 minutes. Remove from pan immediately and allow to drain thoroughly.
- Peel and slice the garlic. Pour olive oil to a large frying pan. Heat pan on medium and sauté garlic for 2 minutes.
- Add the currants and pine nuts to the pan and continue to sauté for 1 minute.
- Add the drained spinach to the pan and mix well, coating with oil.
- Add Salt