We love the clean flavour of home-cured ocean trout, but
shop-bought smoked salmon would work very nicely. Begin this recipe
a day ahead to cure the trout.
To serve:salmon roe (optional)Cured ocean trout120 gmcaster sugar80 gmsea salt flakes40 mlgin½ cupcoarsely chopped dillFinelygrated rind and juice of 1 lemon800 gmpiece of ocean trout, skin on, pin-bonedButtermilk waffles270 gmplain flour2 tbsp eachfinely chopped dill and chivesFinelygrated rind of 1 lemon2 tspbaking powder1 tspbicarbonate of soda440 mlbuttermilk, well shaken2eggs100 gmbutter, melted and cooledFennel salad250 gmceleriac, cut into julienne, placed in acidulated water1baby fennel bulb, thinly sliced on a mandolin, placed in acidulated water, fronds reserved¼ cupcoarsely torn flat-leaf parsley1golden shallot, thinly sliced1½ tbspbuttermilk1½ tbspextra-virgin olive oil1 tsp eachwhite wine vinegar and lemon juice, or to taste
For cured ocean trout, combine sugar, salt, gin, dill, rind and juice in a bowl and mix well to combine. Spread half the salt mixture in a container large enough to hold trout snugly. Place trout on top, then spread with remaining mixture, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate to cure (overnight). Remove from salt mixture, brush off excess, pat dry and wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate until required. Cured trout will keep refrigerated for 5 days. Slice thinly off the skin just before serving.
For buttermilk waffles, combine flour, herbs, rind, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and 1 tsp sea salt in a bowl and make a well in the centre. Whisk buttermilk, eggs and melted butter in a separate bowl to combine, add to well in dry ingredients, mix to combine, then set aside to rest (30 minutes). Preheat a waffle iron and cook batter in batches, according to the manufacturer’s instructions, until golden and crisp (4-5 minutes) and keep warm.
For fennel salad, drain celeriac and fennel and combine with parsley and shallot in a bowl. Whisk remaining ingredients in a separate bowl to combine, season to taste, drizzle over fennel mixture and toss to coat.
To serve, pile slices of ocean trout on warm buttermilk waffles, top with fennel salad and roe and serve.