Gin-cured ocean trout with herb crust

At A Glance

  • Serves icon
  • Serves 8 people
  • Timing icon
  • 45 min preparation
    10 min cooking (plus curing, cooling, chilling)

Lightly curing the fish before roasting adds another dimension of flavour. You can extend the curing time by up to a week and serve it in the same manner as gravlax. You'll need to begin this recipe a day ahead.

You'll need

Method

  1. Combine sugar, salt, gin, horseradish and dill in a bowl (reserve 2 tbsp dill to serve) with plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Spread half the curing mixture in base of a non-reactive dish and place trout on top. Spread over remaining mixture, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight to cure.
  2. Meanwhile, for cucumber pickle, dry-roast fennel seeds until fragrant (1 minute), then coarsely crush in a mortar and pestle and return to pan. Add vinegar, wine, sugar and 100ml water, season to taste and bring to the boil, then cool to room temperature. Combine cucumber and shallot in a non-reactive container, pour over pickling liquid and refrigerate until chilled.
  3. Preheat oven to 200C. Remove trout from curing mixture, brush off any excess and pat dry with absorbent paper. Place in a roasting pan lined with baking paper and drizzle with oil. Roast until just golden and cooked to your liking (4-6 minutes for medium-rare).
  4. Meanwhile, combine mint, parsley, chervil, lemon rind and reserved dill in a bowl and season to taste. Scatter over trout and serve warm with cucumber pickle and lemon wedges.