CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Wine-Poached Trout

It’s hard to convince some people who grew up with eating walleye that there are other species that come close to rivaling it in taste and texture.

Growing up in northern Minnesota, I was one of those walleye snobs. That’s until a hometown friend, Steve Geatz, first took me to Bad Medicine Lake in Becker County, which is known for its great rainbow trout fishing.

Anyone who knows Steve will attest to his fishing prowess, so it will come at no surprise that I was eating fresh rainbows from the get-go. And from that point on, rainbows have rated right up there with walleye in my book.

Rainbow trout (top) and brook trout.
Rainbow trout (top) and brook trout.

Since then, I’ve jumped at any chance to eat the ray-finned fishes in the salmon family. My latest opportunity came when a friend and former co-worker, Kevin Grinde, shared a rainbow and a brook trout with me.

Kevin recently caught the fish on a small lake on the Red Lake Indian Reservation while on a guided fishing excursion with five friends.

There are a few different ways you can prepare trout, including on a grill or in a frying pan. I’ve done trout both ways, but my favorite method is poaching.

Here is a trusted and true recipe that I’ve used over the years. I’ll guarantee even walleye aficionados will fall for it hook, line and sinker.

Wine-Poached Trout
2 14 to 15-inch trout (rainbow or brook), with skin
1 tablespoons olive oil
3 shallots, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup white wine
¼ teaspoon dried dill
¼ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon salt
Heat oil in saute pan. Add shallots and garlic. Sauce for 1 minute. Add wine, dill, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer. Add trout. Baste fish with liquid. Poach for 3 to 4 minutes, turning once. Cover and continue cooking for about 4 to 5 minutes or until fish flakes when tested. Remove fish to serving plate. Turn heat to high and reduce liquid by about half. Spoon liquid over fillets.
Yield: Serves 2 to 4.

2 thoughts on “CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Wine-Poached Trout”

  • Dale Stensgaard January 15, 2016 at 2:06 pm

    Jeff, you also can microwave trout. They can just be gilled, gutted and washed. Or you can cut off the head if you want, Then sprinkle some Cabela’s Salmon and Trout Seasoning inside and out. I microwave one 11- to 12-inch trout for about 6 minutes, or two for about 10 minutes. Of course, you’ll have to experiment with microwave times for bigger fish. In the microwave, the meat stay more moist than it would from baking.

  • Dale Stensgaard January 15, 2016 at 2:08 pm

    Also, you should set the microwave on High with these cooking times.


Leave a Reply