Trout is a relatively popular dish.
Most people like it because it is not heavy on the stomach, and it doesn’t require a lot of seasoning to taste amazing.
It also pairs well with several dishes, including veggies and rice.
Trout can be grilled, pan-fried, smoked, or baked. Whichever you choose to prepare your trout, it is bound to taste amazing. You can never go wrong with trout.
Trout and salmon belong to the same family. Therefore, a lot of people tend to confuse one for the other.
Note that although trout and salmon have a few similarities, they are several differences. They also don’t taste the same.
If you have never tasted trout and wonder what it tastes like, this article is for you. First, we will discuss what trout is, describe its flavor, and discuss a few cooking tips.
We will also discuss how to properly store and point out the differences between trout and salmon. So keep reading if you want to know everything about trout.
What is trout?
Trout is a fish species that belongs to the Salmonidae family. Most people also use the term trout to refer to non-salmonid fish.
There are two main types of trout; freshwater trout and saltwater trout.
Out of the two types, over 12 trout species are available, and they differ in shape, size, and color. Different varieties also vary in flavor.
Trout is a very popular dish. In the United States, most people are familiar with rainbow trout, which is usually available in the market in spring and fall.
In addition, Brook trout and Lake trout are common in New York.
As mentioned above, there are many different varieties of trout, and all of them vary in flavor.
However, trout flavor is generally similar to that of salmon. I would describe the taste of trout as fine, delicate, and nuanced. Its taste is also gamey with a salty after taste.
Most people describe the flavor of freshwater trout as mild and bland. Saltwater trout is more flavorful in comparison, and it is also more savory.
There is no signature taste for trout, but if you’ve tasted salmon and liked it, the chances are that you will like trout too.
Trout has a finer taste, and most people compare it to the taste of chicken.
If you have never tasted trout before, I recommend tasting saltwater trout for the best experience. Unfortunately, freshwater trout is likely to taste bland.
The texture of trout is also very delicate. It has smaller flaked meat compared to other fish varieties.
Why different trout varieties differ in terms of taste
There are two main reasons why different trout varieties have different flavors; the environment they live in and their activity.
The taste of saltwater trout is influenced by their environment. Salty water sets off the production of amino acids, which in turn make the fish more flavorful.
Freshwater trout are less tasty since there are no chemical products in their environment.
Fish activity greatly influences trout flavor. The more fish moves around, the more their structure changes.
Additionally, active fish have more oxygen-storing pigments that greatly contribute to their taste.
This explains why most farm trout are not as flavorful as the ones harvested from rivers and lakes.
Most people argue that trout harvested from wild rivers are the most flavorful. The ones harvested from farms are considerably less flavorful.
Trout cooking tips
Here are a few tips that will come in handy when you are cooking trout.
- Clean the trout properly
It would be best if you properly cleaned trout before cooking. Make sure you scale and gut it properly.
- Debone the fish
You can either debone trout before cooking it or after cooking it. I prefer deboning before cooking.
- Keep it simple
If you want to enjoy trout, you should keep the dish as simple as possible. Use simple seasonings like dill and lemon.
Please stay away from strong-flavored herbs as they can easily overwhelm the trout flavor.
- Cook with light oils
To preserve the natural flavor, you should cook trout in light oils. Olive oil is ideal because it complements the trout flavor and doesn’t overwhelm it.
- Grill or pan-fry it
Suppose you want to enjoy the natural flavor of trout, grill, or pan-fry the fish in olive oil.
I like it when my trout has a light crust, so I dip the trout in flour mixed with salt before pan-frying.
- Bake trout fillet
Trout fillet tastes amazing when baked. All you have to do is season the fillet with lemon, pepper, and salt, then bake it at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat when the trout appears wet and white.
When the trout appears wet and white, it is ready, and you should remove it from heat.
Leaving it on the heat for much longer would result in dry and overcooked trout.
- Serve with rice and veggies.
Trout tastes better when served on a bed of rice. I also like pairing mine with sautéed vegetables.
How to store trout
If you buy trout and want to eat it within a day, you can store it in your refrigerator. If you’ll cook it after two days or more, store it in your freezer.
Before storing trout in your refrigerator, remove it from its packaging, use cold water to rinse it, then dry with paper towels.
Note that trout tends to rot at a fast rate, so even when storing it in the refrigerator, you have to put it in ice.
A cooling rack would be ideal for storing trout in the refrigerator. All you need to do is fill a shallow container with crushed ice, place the rack in the container, then carefully place the fish on the rack.
Ensure that the trout does not come into contact with the ice. Use aluminum foil to tightly seal the container and then place it in your refrigerator.
To store trout in the freezer, rinse and dry the trout, then place it in a heavy-duty freezer bag.
Note that frozen trout should be consumed within two weeks, so label the freezer bag to track how long it has been there.
When you are ready to cook frozen salmon, thaw it in your refrigerator overnight.
Difference between trout and salmon
Trout and salmon belong to the same family and have a few similarities, but they also have several differences.
For starters, trout reside in both fresh and salty water, while salmon only thrives in saltwater.
Although both salmon and trout are touted as oily fish, they vary in flavor. Trout has a more gamey flavor compared to salmon.
Both salmon and trout are pink meats, and their flavor profiles are similar. However, river trout and saltwater trout taste more like salmon compared to farm trout.
Check Out: What does Salmon taste like?
If you have never tasted trout, this is your cue to do it. Very few people don’t like the taste of trout. In fact, I have never met anyone who doesn’t like trout.
Use the tips we have discussed above when cooking trout at home. Alternatively, you could order it at a restaurant. Most restaurants in the United States have trout on their menu.
Just be sure to go to restaurants that properly handle trout. As long as trout is seasoned to perfection, you will like its taste.
Try trout today, and let me know whether you like it. I recommend trying smoked or fried trout for the best experience. I’d choose fried trout any day.