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Pan-cooked trout a sizzling success

Thursday, May 02, 2002

We didn't sit by a brook in the early morning hours to catch our trout for today's recipe -- we drove to McGinnis Sister's Special Food Store in Brentwood. There we snared pan-ready freshwater trout. The obliging employee offered to remove the heads and tails -- and for that we were grateful.


It should be noted that Pan-Cooked Trout with Tomatoes and Herbs calls for the heads and tails -- the choice is yours.

The trout was tender and sweet with no hint of a fishy taste, and the quick recipe was easy to prepare. The recipe contains a mix of herbs, garlic and fresh tomatoes (we used canned -- we'll use fresh when tomatoes are in season). We decided to add three small zucchini, quartered and sliced, to the mix for color.

To serve this dish, we placed the cooked vegetables on a large platter with the trout placed over them. The presentation was spectacular.

We served the trout with sauteed spinach and garlic, risotto with Parmesan cheese and mushrooms, and a tossed salad with olive oil and balsamic raspberry vinegar and crusty bread. A bottle of chardonnay complemented the meal.

And we always have room for dessert, which was a glazed fruit tart with custard filling.

Norman F. Sanfilippo of Baldwin Borough requested recipes for trout. This recipe was sent by Helen Lamison of Carnegie.

Pan-Cooked Trout With Tomatoes And Herbs

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, sliced
2 1-pound brook or rainbow trout, cleaned with tails and heads left on
Sprigs of fresh basil, parsley and chervil
6 plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped (we used about 1 1/2 cups canned diced tomatoes)
2 tablespoons torn fresh basil leaves

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over high heat. Add the garlic slices and saute just until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Set the garlic aside.

Dry the trout with paper towels and stuff the cavities with the fresh herb sprigs. Tie the trout closed with a bit of kitchen string.

Saute the fish in the hot oil for 4 minutes on each side. Reduce the heat and add the tomatoes, basil leaves and reserved garlic. Cover and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes. Serve immediately.


Evelyn Costella of Mt. Lebanon is looking for a pumpkin cheesecake recipe.

Norma Cobb and Jane Davis of Robinson would like a recipe for rye bread.

Frances McCaffrey of Spokane, Wash., writes: "I have been looking for a recipe for orange rolls. They used to serve them with dinner at the Spokane Club. They were very moist and must have used real orange juice but no peel."

If you want to answer a recipe request from a reader or are looking for a recipe yourself, please write to Kitchen Mailbox, c/o Arlene Burnett, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh 15222, or e-mail to aburnett@post-gazette.com Please include a name, neighborhood/city/borough/township and state and a daytime phone number on all correspondence.

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