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Smoked Trout in Endive Spears

Smoked Trout in Endive Spears
Although long a common ingredient in the kitchens of Belgium and France, Belgian endive did not gain favor in America until the 1970s, when it became a popular addition to salads. The leaves of the compact head are tender and crisp, and the flavor ranges from sweet to bitter. Peak season runs from November to April.

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 6 green onions, including 1 inch of the
      tender green portions, thinly sliced
  • 2 small garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. sweet paprika
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups flaked smoked trout fillet
  • 4 heads Belgian endive
  • Lemon wedges for serving

Directions:

In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, green onions, garlic, lemon juice, cayenne, paprika, salt and pepper. Mix well. Add the trout and stir to combine.

Cut off the base from each endive and separate the heads into individual spears. Use only the larger endive spears; reserve the smaller ones for another use.

Spread 1 to 2 tsp. of the trout mixture onto the thicker end of each endive spear. Arrange on a platter and garnish with lemon wedges. Serve immediately.
Serves 6.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Seasonal Celebration Series, Winter, by Joanne Weir (Time-Life Books, 1997).