‘Rowley Leigh, formerly of Kensington Place and now of Le Café Anglais, knows how to show off ingredients to their best advantage. Sea trout is now in season, and is delicious served with new potatoes tossed in butter, chopped fresh mint, salt and pepper, and perhaps a watercress salad. Here, the horseradish makes the fish sparkle and spring to life. If you can find fresh horseradish by the roadside or at a farmer’s market, do grab it, but otherwise buy a good-quality jar with as few additives as possible. You can make a delicious horseradish cream from this by mixing it with lemon zest, crème fraîche and lots of seasoning. It’s good with braised beef, steak or a Sunday roast’
Sea trout fillet with a horseradish crust
Extract from Rowley Leigh’s No Place Like Home
Published by Fourth Estate
Grating horseradish is an unpleasant job. Trying not to grate your fingers, with your eyes full of tears, can reduce any cook to a state of ignominy. However, the effect of its bite on a piece of juicy wild sea trout is electric, so persevere.
1 large (2kg) sea trout
1 glass of white wine
A few peppercorns
A sprig of thyme
100ml double cream
100g fresh horseradish
100g dry breadcrumbs
A little flour
1 egg, beaten
Have the fish filleted, skinned and the pin bones removed, keep the trimmings. Cut each fillet into three. Peel and slice the shallots, then stew them in a little butter in a small pan until soft. Chop the backbone of the trout, add it to the pan and seal in the butter.
Add the white wine, peppercorns and thyme and cook very gently for 10 minutes. Cover with the cream and cook for another 10 minutes. Season well with salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice. Strain through a fine sieve.
Peel the horseradish, then grate it very finely and mix with the breadcrumbs. Season the trout fillets and dredge in a little flour, shaking off any excess. Dip one side in the beaten egg and then into the breadcrumb/horseradish mixture. Fry the fillets, crumb side first, in butter for about four minutes a side. They should be very moist and slightly pink in the middle. Serve with the sauce and some Jersey Royals.