1 packed teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (from about 1 medium lemon)
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
Freshly ground black pepper
1 sourdough baguette
2 tablespoons olive oil
Makes:About 48 crostini
Combining a few classic French flavors makes a quick yet refined dish that’s ideal for entertaining. Just mix together smoked trout with apples, crème fraîche, fresh tarragon, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Spoon it onto some crunchy crostini and serve this sophisticated yet easy hors d’oeuvre at your next cocktail or holiday party.
Special equipment: You’ll need a pastry brush for this recipe.
What to buy: Crème fraîche is a naturally thickened fresh cream with a tangy flavor and a rich texture. Perfect for appetizers and desserts, it’s also good in soups and sauces because it doesn’t curdle or separate with heat. If you can’t find it, sour cream is a decent substitute.
Game plan: The smoked trout salad can be prepared up to a day ahead of time and refrigerated in an airtight container. Stir briefly before topping the toasts.
The toasts (crostini means little toasts in Italian) can be made up to 1 day ahead and stored covered at room temperature. Once assembled, serve the crostini immediately.
If you’re feeling especially industrious, you can use your own smoked trout for this recipe.
1Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the middle.
2Place the trout in a large bowl and break it up into bite-size pieces. Add the apple, crème fraîche, tarragon, lemon zest, and lemon juice and stir to combine. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed; set aside.
3Using a serrated knife, cut the baguette crosswise on a slight bias into 1/4-inch-thick slices (you should have about 48 pieces). Place the bread slices on a baking sheet, lightly brush them with the oil, and season with salt and pepper. Bake until golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer the toasts to a wire rack and cool completely.
4When ready to serve, top the toasts with the smoked trout salad.
Beverage pairing:Domaine du Closel Savennières “La Jalousie,” France. Savennières is an appellation in France’s Loire region. The wine is made from Chenin Blanc, a grape that because of its light fruitiness and touch of earth goes wonderfully with a freshwater fish as subtle and earthy as trout.