Speckled trout is the preferred fish in white-tablecloth restaurants in New Orleans, but the supply for restaurants has been much limited by law in recent years. There is no shortage for recreational fishermen, however. If you can’t find trout, this will also work well with striped bass, flounder, sheepshead, black drum or redfish. The original version of this dish was created by the late Nick Mosca, formerly chef of Elmwood Plantation and La Louisiane. It is deceptively simple to prepare; it looks and tastes like a much more complicated dish.
- 4 6-to-8-oz. fillets of speckled trout
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1 Tbs. smallest possible capers
- 1 1/2 cups seasoned Italian bread crumbs
- 1 cup lump crabmeat
- 1 cup peeled medium shrimp
- 1/2 cup white wine
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Place the trout fillet in a buttered skillet with an ovenproof handle or on a metal baking pan, and spoon a tablespoon of lemon juice on top of it. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and capers, then about half of the bread crumbs.
2. Distribute the crab lumps and shrimp uniformly over the bread crumb layer, and pour the white wine gently over it. Top with the remainder of the bread crumbs, and put the trout in the hot oven for 15 minutes. Check it after 10 minutes to make sure fish is not overcooking. No matter how many times you’ve read that the fish should flake easily, that is the mark of overcooked fish.