Culinary smoke is one of those umami flavors difficult to explain until you’ve experienced it. I have several childhood food memories having liked various smoked meats, cheeses, and fish so when I got older and began cooking for myself, I inherently started adding those ingredients to my food.
I buy my smoked trout from one of my favorite restaurants called Annie Gunn’s. They have an amazing smokehouse deli attached to the restaurant and sell many of the ingredients they serve on their menu. For this recipe, I paired their trout with a light creamy cheese sauce, so you’ll taste just a kiss of smoke followed by the delicate flavor of the fish. Then when you swirl it onto a fork blended with chewy fettuccini, briny capers, and fresh dill, it’s a food memory you’ll never forget.
Keep in mind smoked fish tends to have a considerable amount of sodium, so you’ll notice there’s no added salt in this recipe. Season your dish to taste, but I think you’ll find you won’t need it here.
1 box fettuccini pasta
1 smoked trout fillet, pin bones removed
1 cup Gournay cheese such as Boursin
1 cup red onion, roughly chopped
1/2 cup reduced-fat half and half
1/4 cup capers
1/4 cup fresh dill
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
Freshly ground black pepper
1) Cook the pasta according to package directions for al dente, drain and set aside.
2) Place all of the remaining ingredients in a food processor and pulse several times until the ingredients are combined.
3) Transfer the trout mixture to a deep saucepan and heat over medium heat until the cheese has melted and the sauce has thickened.
4) Add the pasta to the pan and toss to coat. Leave the pan on the burner for 1 minute until the pasta is heated through.
5) Serve the trout pasta hot with a sprinkle of fresh dill and freshly ground black pepper.