Smoked trout is easy to prepare at home: Simply soak in brine overnight and smoke over indirect heat for 15 minutes. It's delicious in salads, on crackers with cream cheese as an hors d'oeuvre, or on bagels for brunch.
This recipe goes with .
3 cups boiling water
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 sprigs fresh thyme
2 (4-inch) orange rind strips
2 (10-ounce) dressed whole rainbow trout
2 cups wood chips
How to Make It
To prepare brine, combine 3 cups water, sugar, salt, pepper, thyme, and rind in a large bowl; stir until sugar and salt dissolve. Combine water mixture and fish in a 13 x 9–inch baking dish. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Soak wood chips in water 1 hour. Drain well.
Prepare grill for indirect grilling, heating one side to medium-high and leaving one side with no heat. Pierce bottom of a disposable aluminum foil pan several times with the tip of a knife. Place pan on heated side of grill; add wood chips to pan.
Remove fish from brine; discard brine. Rinse fish with cold water; pat dry with paper towels.
Coat grill rack with cooking spray; place on grill. Place fish, skin side down, on unheated side; cover and grill 15 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Flake fish with fork. Discard skin.
Let the brine solution cool first before pouring it over the trout. Vary the flavor of the brine mixture by adding a pinch of crushed red pepper, maple syrup, minced fresh ginger, cardamom pods, or crushed garlic. You can choose trout fillets instead of the butterflied trout; fillets will cook faster.