It Was… The Salmon Trout

2007.May.07 Monday · 3 comments

in Food & Recipes

 In 1992 the steelhead trout, Salmo gairdneri (the species named in memory of Meredith Gairdner, a 19th-century naturalist) was reclassified in the genus Oncorhynchus (“hooked nose”), and mykiss (a Siberian word for the species). There are two races, both native to Western North America. The common name of the freshwater O.m. is rainbow trout, a colorful game fish that has been transplanted worldwide. The sea-run, or anadromous rainbow trout is called steelhead, a word that entered the common nomenclature in the early 1880s.”

– From Discovering Lewis & Clark

Salmon Trout with Crab Hollandaise

Buenos Aires – It’s the new thing in the fish markets here… salmon trout, or, as noted above, what I grew up on as rainbow trout. They’re being farmed in Bariloche, and some of the first shipments of the adult fish have just come in (I gather there have been scattered shipments in past years, but now they’re going to be regularly available). They’re a bit less expensive than the imported pink salmon from Chile, or fresh river trout, but a bit more than many other fish available here – about 28 pesos a kilo – trust me, worth the price.

All I wanted to do was roast one side of this beautiful fish very simply. I sprinkled it with a little salt, rubbed it with some decent olive oil, and scattered some coarsely chopped parsley and just a little rosemary on top. Then I threw it in the oven, cooked it until it was medium. Cut the fillet in portions, and put them on the plate. Now, I had to have something to accompany these beautiful fillets – a simple mix of equal parts of cut up potatoes, broccoli, and cauliflower, simmer together until soft – scooped out on the side of the fillet. A little sauce? Why yes indeed… If you’ve never made what Irma Romabauer (Joy of Cooking) calls “Blender Hollandaise”, get yourself in front of a blender. Is it a traditional hollandaise, all yellow and glossy? No. It comes out much paler. And, if you do what I did, and add a drained can of crab meat to the blender at the last minute – it gets really light, and also more like a vinaigrette. You lose that thick creamy quality, but interestingly, the liquid in the crab meat (or whatever else you might toss in of similar ilk) makes a great emulsifier – so the hollandaise is no longer at risk for “breaking”. And a crab flavored hollandaise is a thing of beauty atop a good, meaty, fish fillet. Come to think of it, hollandaise atop the vegetable mixture was pretty darned good itself…

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

asadoarg May 7, 2007 at 10:47

That looks tasty!

Yeah I don’t get why some call it trucha salmon when all of the fishing guides/books/whatever say trucha arco iris.

Some of the fish markets in my area sell frozen ones from Santa Cruz (I believe). They’re in a bunch of rivers though you can only catch from Nov. to the end of Feb. Quite a few farming operations but only for the purpose of restocking rivers for sport fishing not selling. Haven’t had any luck yet but a few extremely nice friends would pass along their catch from time to time.

matt May 11, 2007 at 21:40

back in january just before i left argentina i bought some frozen rainbow trout in coto (chacarita) for a lot less than 28pesos/kilo, i seem to remember it being around 18 because i was so surprised at the difference in price of the frozen salmon next to it. it was pretty good oven baked, not as nice as fresh rainbow trout though. the day before we left argentina i found 2 pieces at the bottom of the deep freeze and didn’t have time to eat them-my cats did though and they now pester me every time they smell anything vaguley fishy…!

matt May 11, 2007 at 21:44

forgot to mention before that Azema on Carranza 1875 (corner costa rica) is the best non-steak restaurant i ate at in my almost 3 years in BA. I notice you haven’t reviewed it yet. if you do get around to going then the rabbit is really good, the ribs are as well and my girlfriend couldn’t get enough of the crab sorrentinos.

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