ChalkStream trout with silky mashed potatoes, grilled cucumber and the flavour-packed romesco sauce, topped with crispy trout skin, courtesy of Nuno Furtado
4 ChalkStream® trout fillets, acclimatised to room temperature
1kg floury potatoes
Extra virgin olive oil
For the sauce
3 large cloves garlic, peeled
3 fresh ripe plum tomatoes
40g of hazelnuts
1 egg yolk
225 ml of extra virgin olive oil
2 tbs sherry vinegar
First make the Romesco sauce. Preheat the oven to 200o Put the whole garlic gloves, tomatoes and hazelnuts into a roasting tray in the preheated oven for approximately 10 minutes and cook until the hazelnuts are golden and the tomatoes have soften. Take from the oven when ready and put into a food processor with the egg yolk. Blitz on high speed and gradually add the olive oil until silky-smooth. Stir in the vinegar, season with salt and pepper and leave aside.
Then make the mash. Bring to boil a pot with water and a pinch of salt. Peel and cut the potatoes in half and then add to the boiling water and cook until fork-test tender. Drain the potatoes in a colander and put back into the pot. Add 6 tbs of extra virgin olive oil, a generous splash of whole milk and mash up; add more milk if necessary for a creamy texture (remember the mash will dry up slightly over time). Push the mash through a sieve for an extra smooth texture and reserve.
Now it is time for the trout. Heat a large frying pan and add a splash of olive oil and fry the trout skin down for 2-3 minutes. Turn off the heat and, with the help of a spatula, remove the skin off the fish, now made a little crispier. Leave the skin on the same frying pan, off the heat, and transfer the trout onto a roasting tray, with the skin-side (where the skin used to be) up. Cook the fish in the oven for 6-8 minutes, until pale-orangy pink but not overcooked.
In the meantime, slice the cucumber lengthways and grill until lightly charred. When the trout is almost done, put the frying pan back on high heat and fry the skin until crispy.
Then assemble the plate. Put a good portion of mash in the centre, surrounded by the Romesco sauce, a few slices of grilled cucumber on top of the mash before placing in the trout. Finish it with the crispy skin, season with salt and pepper and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.