Christmas Eve 2010 – Baked rainbow trout with lemon & green onions

I needed a quick and easy recipe to bake a fish for Christmas Eve, so I ended up finding a recipe on the Food Network website, and modified the hell out of it as usual.

My original inspiration for making this dish, was seeing Jacques Pépin a long time ago on either Fast Food My Way, or Cooking with Julia, but I just can’t remember which one off  hand. But what I do remember from Jacques, was him using a parchment paper pouch to cook the fish in the oven.

So with my basic recipe in hand, and a vague memory from Jacques, I was off and running.

Ingredients (serves 2-3):

  • One farm raised rainbow trout, head-on, approximately 3/4 lb in total weight
  • One whole lemon, sliced
  • Herbs (most recipe use thyme or rosemary, but I had some green onions on hand that I wanted to use)
  • Kosher Salt and Finely ground black pepper
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Technique:
Pre-heat the oven to 375F. Wash the fish inside and out, then season with salt and pepper on all sides. Lay the fish on a sheet of parchment paper, and place the lemon and herbs inside the fishes belly. Fold the fish back together, drizzle with olive oil, and fold the pouch to seal tightly. Place the parchment pouch on a rimmed baking sheet, and pop it into the oven to bake for 20-25 mins. Once done baking serve immediately.

Side Notes:
1) If the fish is about 3/4 lb, go with 20 mins, but if closer to 1 lb go with 25 mins. For the 3/4 lb fish that I cooked, I went with 25 minutes, and the fish ended up being slightly on the dry side. So don’t overcook that poor fish.
2) Like I mentioned with the herbs, I used green onions, only because I had of bunch of them on hand. So feel free to experiment with fresh or dried herbs.
3) Don’t go overboard on the black pepper. For some reason, a little goes a long ways in the recipe. Also use a finer grind, since a courser grind added a unnecessary “heat/spice” element to the flavor of the fish.
4) For an off the cuff recipe, this fish turned out pretty good. So I’ll have to remember this recipe, if I ever need a quick fish dish.

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