Autumn is the season for heartwarming dishes and a revisit to nostalgic flavors. And as Nevada Day approaches, it’s time to relive those cherished memories, much like days spent fishing in the calm waters of Quincy. The beauty of bringing home a fresh rainbow trout and preparing it with simple yet elegant accompaniments is unparalleled.
This recipe is a dish that marries tradition with finesse – Rainbow trout en papillote with black forbidden rice.
- 1 whole rainbow trout (12 to 18-inch)
- 1 cup black forbidden rice
- Bones and scraps from the trout
- 1 celery stalk
- 1 bay leaf
- 5 whole peppercorns
- 1 head of garlic
- 4 ounces basil
- 1 white onion, quartered
- 2 Roma tomatoes, halved
- 1 leek top
- 1 cup white wine
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 leek bottom
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 4 ounces sundried tomatoes in olive oil
- 1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper
- 1 preserved lemon, sliced
- 6 to 7 thyme sprigs
- Parchment paper (16 x 24-inch sheet cut in half)
- Prepare the Trout: Fillet both sides of the rainbow trout. Use needle nose pliers or pin bone tweezers to remove the pin bones. Season both sides with salt and pepper. Retain the scraps and bones for the stock.
- Prepare the Stock: On a roasting tray, lay out the trout bones, scraps, garlic, celery, onion, and tomato. Roast for 30 minutes at 350°F. Transfer these roasted items to a small stockpot. Add bay leaf, peppercorns, basil, thyme (half), and leek tops. Cover with two quarts of water. Deglaze the roasting pan with white wine, scraping off the bits. Add this deglazed mixture to the stockpot. Simmer for 30 minutes, ensuring it doesn’t overcook to prevent a strong fishy taste. Strain the stock through a China cap lined with double-layered cheesecloth.
- Cook the Rice: To a saucepot, add rice, stock, salt, and the remaining thyme. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, simmering for 10-12 minutes until rice is done. Alternatively, use a rice cooker.
- Prepare the Veggies: Slice the leek bottom into 1/2-inch rounds. Rinse thoroughly. Sauté in butter with salt and pepper until tender. Remove from heat, mix in sundried tomatoes and a tablespoon of their oil.
- Assemble the Papillote: Cut parchment paper into a heart shape. Fold it in half. On one half of each parchment, layer half the rice, veggies, trout fillet (skin side up), preserved lemons, and a sprig of thyme. Add 2 tablespoons of trout stock and butter.
- Seal and Bake: Fold the parchment paper, sealing the edges in a tight pleated pattern. Preheat oven to 425°F. Place the parchment packets on a baking sheet. Bake for about 10 minutes or until the packets puff up and brown slightly.
- Serve: Open the parchment packet carefully, letting out the steam, and enjoy the dish straight from the packet.
A glass of burgundy chardonnay or a crisp sauvignon blanc complements the flavors impeccably.
Recreating this dish is more than just cooking; it’s about cherishing memories, celebrating nature’s bounty, and indulging in pure culinary delight. Enjoy!