Garlic

Baked Lemon-Garlic Steelhead Trout

Baked Lemon-Garlic Steelhead Trout

Baked Lemon-Garlic Steelhead Trout

After a dozen experiments with toppings for a fish fillet to bake in the oven, I am finally ready to announce the winner. It is butter-lemon-garlic topping. Very simple. Made with butter, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt and pepper. That’s it.

But there is a secret. I use clarified butter instead of the good old regular (unsalted) butter. Why? Because clarified butter has that deep, nutty flavor that pairs wonderfully with the taste of a tender fish fillet. Steelhead is my favorite fish to use with this topping. But salmon works just as fine.

Here we go, step by step.

Steelhead Trout Fillet

This is steelhead fillet. With the skin on. 

Baked Lemon-Garlic Steelhead Trout

Steelhead skin side down. It looks just like salmon, doesn’t it?

Steelhead Trout Fillet

We place our fillet on a piece of aluminum foil before baking.

Lemon-Garlic Sauce

And here’s  our luscious topping. Clarified butter, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt and pepper. 

Steelhead Trout Fillet with Lemon-Garlic Sauce

We slather our fillet with the topping. And sprinkle some fresh or dried dill weed on top (dried pictured).  

Baked Lemon-Garlic Steelhead Trout

Baked! Beautiful! Look at those juices seeping from the sides of the fish. You can’t beat the clean and bright color of the clarified butter. 

Baked Lemon-Garlic Steelhead Fillet

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 medium fillet  of steelhead trout, with skin on (can substitute salmon fillet)
2 tablespoons of clarified butter (can substitute regular unsalted butter, slightly melted and cooled)
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
Zest of 1/2 medium-size lemon
Juice of 1/2 medium-size lemon
Salt
Ground black pepper
Pinch of finely chopped fresh dill or dried dill weed (dried dill is less overpowering)

Method:

Preheat the oven to 450F.

Line a large rimless baking sheet with aluminum foil. The baking sheet should be large enough to fit the fillet; if the fillet doesn’t fit, cut it into half crosswise.

Place the fish skin side down on the foil.

In a small bowl combine the clarified butter, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir to mix well. (You will notice how creamy the topping is in the photos. It is because I use clarified butter stored in a cool pantry, not in the refrigerator. Stored in the pantry, it remains soft, so no need to melt it, while in the refrigerator it hardens, so melt it slightly.  The same with regular unsalted butter – melt it slightly).

Spoon the mixture over the fillet and spread to  coat the fish. Sprinkle with dill.

Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 12-15 minutes, or until the flesh is cooked through and flakes easily. If you used salmon fillet, you may need to cook it a little longer since salmon flesh is thicker and not as tender as that of steelhead.

Use a large spatula to lift the fillet off the foil paper, peeling the skin off the fish and leaving the skin on the pan. Transfer the fillet to a serving platter. Serve immediately with any side dish you prefer.

Roasted Mini Sweet Peppers with Garlic and Thyme

Roasted Mini Sweet Peppers with Garlic and Thyme

Roasted Sweet Peppers with Garlic and Thyme

This may sound like a teaser to those of you living in the snowing states, but Los Angeles, my friends, is living an early summer in the winter month of January. It almost sounds unfair. I hope I could send you some sunshine from here.

The heat wave shifted my food cravings. Summer means wanting to eat summery foods, like colorful sweet peppers. I recently bought a big bag of mini bell peppers and roasted them, just I do in the summer, to go with main dishes, such as grilled meats. I jazz the tiny peppers up with garlic and dried thyme and off they go in the oven. Winter or summer, fall or spring, roasted peppers are a big hit. It sort of rhymes!

Roasted Sweet Peppers with Garlic and Thyme

Roasted Mini Sweet Peppers with Garlic and Thyme

This is one recipe where you basically eyeball the ingredients. Use as many peppers as you baking pan will fit and as many servings you want to get from them. Use as much garlic as you wish  - want a deeper garlicky flavor, add more, and vise versa. The same with thyme but do not overdo with it – we just want a nice subtle thyme flavor. Instead of thyme you can use oregano, or use both at the same time. Follow your palate demands.

Also, if you don’t have mini peppers, you can use large bell peppers of various colors – cut them in half, core, and seed, then arrange on a baking sheet cut side up. Proceed with the rest of the steps as in the recipe below.

Serves about 6

Ingredients:

About 1 pound red, yellow, orange mini bell peppers, washed and pat-dried
3-4 garlic cloves, passed through a garlic pressor
A tablespoon of crushed dried thyme (substitute with oregano or use both)
Olive oil
Salt and black pepper

Method:

Preheat the oven to 400F.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Put the peppers on the parchment. Sprinkle with garlic and thyme. Drizzle with a few tablespoons of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Toss with your hands to coat the peppers with the rest of the ingredients. Spread the peppers to form one layer.

Roast until the skin blisters and the flesh is tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the roasted peppers to a serving platter. Serve immediately as a side dish.

Roasted Sweet Peppers with Garlic and Thyme

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