Here is where the real challenge began. What did I know about trout? Nothing other than it has A LOT of bones. So now I was faced with the task of filleting the fish I bought. I have never filleted a whole fish before. I had some ideas how to do it, but I wanted to make sure I did it right the first time and I didn't leave more fish on the bones than I did on the fillets I intended to create. Where does one go to read about filleting a whole trout? Why the internet of course. I found a couple of videos, but one was just what I was looking for and it showed me the simplest way to do it.
With my new found knowledge I was armed with I was ready to proceed. What do you need to fillet a fish? A sharp boning knife and a good large cutting board. With that at hand I was ready. Having a whole fish can feel a little intimidating. For a majority of Americans our food usually does not come to our homes with their heads on. But for this girl tonight's dinner had a head and I had to do something about that. So in Marie Antoinette's famous words, "Off with their heads!" And off they went.
Heads off, check. Now onto the filleting. This was a bit more labor intensive, but it is actually pretty easy with having the right tools. I said having a sharp boning knife was important and this is where it came in. Boning knives are narrow and very flexible and make making cuts very close to bones rather easy.I removed the spine and then I followed the rib bones like I saw in the video and they came off for the most part in one piece. Once I got one side done I proceeded to the other. It wasn't perfect, but I did succeed in getting almost no meat on the bones I was removing. Also, one side wasn't as pretty as the other. I knew in the end it wasn't going to matter once the meal was complete.
Time to cook dinner. Thankfully the trout Gods were on my side and nothing stuck when I was cooking the fillets in a stainless steel skillet. I wanted a crunchy skin and this was the best way to do it. Once the fillets were cooked I let them rest for a few minutes while I made a brown butter sauce in the same pan. When the sauce was done I topped the fish with haricot verts (thin green beans) and toasted sliced almonds and drizzled it with the brown butter sauce and finished it with a sprinkle of Maldon salt. Ta-Da! Time to eat.