Skillet NC Speckled Trout, Warm Almond-Caper Vinaigrette with Cauliflower “Grits”

recipe by Ricky Moore, Chef and Owner of SALTBOX Seafood Joint, Durham, NC

Serves 4

1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup toasted almond
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon capers, drained and chopped
4 (6-ounce) trout fillets
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Combine parsley, 1 tablespoon oil, rind, juice, almonds and capers in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.
Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle fish evenly with salt and pepper.
Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Arrange fish, skin side down, in pan; cook 5 minutes.
Turn; cook 1 minute or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.
Remove fish from pan. Add parsley mixture to pan; cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Spoon parsley mixture over fish. Serve with lemon wedges, if desired

Cheddar Cauliflower “Grits”

Serves 4

2 tbs. butter or coconut oil
1 medium onion, minced
1 large head Cheddar or orange cauliflower, cut into florets
1 cup white vegetable broth
1 cup milk
1/4 cup boursin cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Run cauliflower florets through a food processor until they are rice-like in consistency. You can also use a grater, but the food processor is quicker.

Melt butter or coconut oil in a large sauce pot over medium heat. Add onion and cook for a couple of minutes or until soft. Add riced cauliflower, broth and milk. Bring to a boil then lower heat and cover.

Allow to simmer for 10 minutes or until liquid is absorbed to your liking. Add cheese and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Note: Cheddar or orange cauliflower is hybrid varietal. Compared to the traditional white variety, this cauliflower has a brilliant golden orange hue.

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