Saturday, March 25, 2006

Hot Smoked Trout and Wasabi Ricotta Toasts

My sister and I are entirely different food shoppers. I wander around with a few vague ideas and pick up whatever interests me. She plans a week of meals and sets off, list in hand. When I found this out, I was baffled. "Really? You do?" It just puzzled me that we could have such different styles. She cooks from recipes mostly and while I own an entire bookcase of cookbooks, I use them mostly for techniques and inspirations - I very rarely actually cook from them.

I think that this is spilling over more and more into my entertaining life. On several occasions recently, when called upon to compose a menu for guests, I've stumbled. Absolutely blocked. Poured over the books most likely to help and still nothing. But once I'm in the market, I see the produce in front of me and suddenly it all falls into place. Trout. Wasabi. Ricotta.

One of the delights I picked up at the Collingwood Children's Farm Market was Buxton Smoked Trout. Figman and I have pigged out on this before and I knew it would be perfect for a little snack before dinner. (Does anyone, incidentally, still refer to these as hors d'oeuvres? It makes me feel like I'm in the 70's!). As I popped the whole trout into my calico bag, I was mentally assembling these little toasts and they came out according to plan.

An Illiwarra Sourdough baguette. Wasabi swirled through fresh ricotta. Trout flaked and boned. Handful of chopped coriander. A couple of drops of sesame oil. Easy peasy. I also bought a bottle of the Buxton salmon roe (hand milked) and used them to decorate. The one pictured above doesn't have the roe because I hadn't thought of it at that point!

These were a hit at the dinner. The richness of the hot smoked trout is balanced well by the light bite of the wasabi and the zing of the little balls of roe bursting in the mouth. Although next time I'd like to use the Lemnos Organic Ricotta as it has a smooth creamy texture which would complement the wasabi and trout perfectly. I found it in the supermarket of all places!


At 8:32 AM, Anonymous Barbara said...

I don't do lists either. How do you know on Monday what you want to eat on Friday? Smoked marlin goes great with reisling, maybe the smoked trout will also.

At 9:41 AM, Blogger Ange said...

I think its funny that you are both so set in either direction with your cooking syles. I usually pick out a couple of new recipes in advance to try out & then the rest is made up through the week. Working 5 days a week I find I have to be a bit organised as cant be just popping out to the shops for inspiration or ingredients whenever I feel like it.

At 4:16 PM, Blogger Niki said...

Yep, I had trouble trying to describe my little truffle egg things without using the word hors 'doeuvres (mainyl because I'd have to look up how to spell it!). It was only at the end that I remembered canapes...but how do you put accents on letters in blogger??
I love that Illawarra bread - only discovered it late last year. Makes my avoidance of white bread very difficult!
I have some ricotta at home I don't know how to finish - mixing it with wasabi is a brilliant idea.


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