appetizer recipe

Smoked Trout Brandade

by Anne Maxfield on November 20, 2014

Accidental Locavore Smoked Trout BrandadeBrandade is one of those dishes that can be really good or totally awful. The Accidental Locavore has never been terribly fond of salty-fishy food, so foods like anchovies or caviar need to be carefully disguised. Same for salt cod, which is what brandade is usually made from. When I saw this recipe for a brandade made from smoked trout, it gave me the perfect excuse to toss a couple of trout on the smoker (and bring home another baguette from Maison Kayser). This filled two small gratin pans, so dinner for 2 or appetizers for 4 or more.

  • 1 large russet potato (about 10 oz.)
  • Olive oil- 1 teaspoon for the potato and ½ cup for the brandade
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 8 oz. smoked trout, skin and bones removed
  • ¾ cup whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika (optional)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan
  • 1 baguette, sliced, toasted

Accidental Locaovre Smoked Trout and MilkHeat oven to 400°. Rub potato with 1 teaspoon olive oil and bake directly on oven rack until tender, 50–60 minutes. Let cool slightly, then peel. Put in a small bowl and mash potato with a fork or potato masher, until nearly smooth.

While potato is baking, bring garlic, trout, and milk to a simmer in a medium saucepan. Remove from heat; let sit 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer half of trout to a plate; flake into small pieces.

Put the garlic, milk, remaining trout, lemon juice, paprika and remaining ½ cup of olive oil in a food processor; process until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl and gently fold in the mashed potato and flaked trout. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Accidental Locavore Preparing BrandadeTransfer trout mixture to a 1-qt. shallow baking dish or four 6-oz. ramekins and top with Parmesan. Bake until cheese is melted and golden brown and brandade is heated through, 15–20 minutes. Serve with toasted baguette slices and enjoy!

My verdict: Potatoes and smoked fish, what’s not to like? This makes a nice, simple supper with a side salad or veg. I did have it with the toasted baguette and would serve it that way as an hors d’oeuvre, but didn’t really need it as dinner. I had smoked two trout and this used one of the two. I did use a russet potato, but Yukon Gold or two would work well. If you wanted to save time, you could pop the potato in the microwave to bake them.

 

 

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7 Ingredients for the Best Guacamole Ever!

by Anne Maxfield on January 30, 2014

Accidental Locavore Great GuacamoleSince it’s almost Super Bowl Sunday, what good would this blog be without a recipe for guacamole?

And not to brag, but the Accidental Locavore makes the best guacamole!

Here’s the key: lots of cilantro. Even if you’re not a big cilantro fan, just close your eyes and go for it, you’ll be glad you did.

The other tip is to save 2-3 of the avocado pits, clean them and put them in the middle of the guacamole to keep it from discoloring.

Great Guacamole Recipe

  • 4-5 really ripe Haas avocados, peeled and cut into 1/2 dice
  • 1 small white onion, chopped fine
  • 1 medium tomato, diced (try to find a ripe one)
  • 1-2 serrano chiles, or jalapenos, depending on your heat threshold, seeded and chopped very fine
  • Most of a bunch of cilantro chopped fine
  • Lime juice to taste
  • Salt to taste

Mix the avocado, tomato, onion, cilantro, chiles, lime, and salt, slightly mashing the avocado as you mix. Taste and add additional chiles, lime and cilantro according to your taste. Put the avocado pits in the center of your bowl (see photo). Serve and enjoy!

My verdict: Like pesto, guacamole is a matter of taste. If you’re not sure, start slowly–a little chile, a small handful of cilantro, some lime. Taste it and add what makes sense to you, but taste it with a chip, because that will add salt to the end product.

The secret to this guacamole, and I think all good ones, is more cilantro than you think is necessary. Ripe avocados are also a must.

The big green Florida avocados have no flavor, you always want a Haas. If you can’t find good ripe avocados, go buy them now and leave them on the counter to ripen. If they’re rock hard and you need them soon, put them in a brown paper bag with a banana, it will speed up the process.

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Recipe: Great Guacamole

by Anne Maxfield on March 29, 2010

Accidental Locavore Great GuacamoleAs long as the Accidental Locavore has been on sort of a Mexican kick, here’s how I make guacamole. Since it’s so simple, it’s always surprised me that whenever I make guacamole everyone goes crazy for it. The secret is lots of cilantro. Even if you’re not a big cilantro fan, just close your eyes, and go for it. The other tip is to save 2-3 of the avocado pits, clean them and put them in the middle of the guacamole to keep it from discoloring.

  • 4-5 really ripe Haas avocados (the big green Florida ones, just have no flavor), peeled and cut into 1/2 dice
  • 1 small white onion chopped fine
  • 1 good sized ripe tomato, diced
  • 1-2 serrano chiles, or jalapenos, depending on your heat threshold, seeded and chopped very fine
  • Most of a bunch of cilantro chopped fine
  • Lime juice to taste
  • Salt to taste

Mix the avocado, tomato, onion, cilantro, chiles, lime, and salt, slightly mashing the avocado as you mix. Taste and add additional chiles, lime and cilantro according to your taste. Serve and enjoy. Put the pits in the middle of the serving bowl (see photo) to prevent browning.

 

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