“Fish, to taste right, must swim three times -in water, in butter, and in wine.”
This fish did swim in water, the butter was substituted with olive oil and it sure did taste amazing with the chilled white Gruner Veltliner.
A late night birthday dinner with friends – I meant for it to be light and was thinking about it all week. For the fact – it had to be fish since I got “the hint” that it’s going to be accompanied with white wine. And since it was wednesday and my store brings in fresh fish on tuesdays and wednesdays, it had to be something still alive. So there – half of the puzzle was solved – trout it is (not rainbow)!
I went grocery shopping and tried to pick the biggest trout in the aquarium but oh how much I underestimated and didn’t think ahead… I wanted to fillet it and when I was done playing with the fish at home – there were 2 skinny fillets :). One other intention fulfilled – the dinner WAS going to be light :).
I wanted it the be baked with the skin on, so I got the scales off, cleaned it, took all bones out and was ready to start the whole process.
It was a dinner for 3 (with the amount of tomatoes and more fish, it could have easily been served for 4 ;)):
* 1 trout (1kg before fillet’ing)
* 2 cans whole peeled tomatoes
* 3 garlic cloves
* 1chilli pepper
* A handful of fresh basil
* Half a can (big handful) of black olives with pits
* 2 tablespoons capers (drained)
* Sherry vinegar
* Olive oil
* Salt and pepper
For the side salad:
* baby spinach leaves
* 3 tablespoons of pine nuts
* 3-4 tablespoons chopped sun dried tomatoes (in olive oil)
* Olive oil & balsamic vinegar for dressing
The fish was prepared for cooking. First the sauce. Heat up the olive oil over moderate heat, chop off the tail of the chilli pepper, puncture the pepper with the knife and throw in once the garlic is tender, but not browned yet.
Take the basil leaves off the stems, save the leaves for later and add the chopped stems to the pan. Add the tomatoes, cover and cook over moderate heat for 30-35 minutes.
For the time when the sauce is done, pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees.
Remove the chilli pepper, crush the tomatoes in the sauce with a spoon, add a dash of sherry vinegar and pour into a roasting pan. Place the fish fillets on the sauce, skin facing up. Crush the olives with a side of the knife or with the bottom of the can, remove the pits and spread the olives over the fish and sauce, sprinkle with capers and put in the oven for about 10 minutes. The length of the cooking time solely depends on the fish. Since my fillets were quite small and thin, 7 minutes was enough.
For the side salad, while the fish was baking, simply tear the lettuce, add the spinach, sprinkle with pine nuts, mix in the sun dried tomato with a dash of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Serve the fish with a generous amount of sauce.
The preparation was very easy, if getting the fillet in the store and skipping the cleaning of the fish, this dish can be served in 40 minutes, ~10 minutes actual work time.