Barbecued trout is like smoked trout, but just different enough to warrant its own recipe.
This is a slow and low recipe, hopefully with lots of smoke involved, but you can make BBQ trout in less than an hour, where proper smoked trout takes several hours. You can find my smoked trout recipe here.
You will want a decent sized trout here, at least 12 inches long, and ideally about 18 inches long. And while you can certainly barbecue trout whole, or just headless, and in the case of very large trout fillets, I really like to butterfly my trout first. (Here are my instructions on how to butterfly a fish.)
After that, flavors are up to you. You will want to salt or brine your fish first, then apply whatever flavoring you like. A simple brine would be 1/4 cup kosher salt and 1 quart of water, for maybe 2 to 4 hours. You can then do a spice rub, or a barbecue sauce when the trout is cooking.
I decided to take this in a Japanese direction. I soaked the trout in soy sauce, patted the fish dry, then slicked it up with some sesame oil, then sprinkled the Japanese spice mix togarashi all over it. I can tell you it is out of this world good, either by itself or flaked over simple steamed rice.
This same technique can be done with similarly oily fish, such as bluefish, mackerel, whitefish, grayling, and small jacks. It’s also good on catfish, for those of you who live inland.
Use this recipe's structure to play with your own flavors. I really like this Japanese take on it, though. You can find togarashi in the Asian sections of most supermarkets in little jars.
- 1 large trout or kokanee, filleted or butterflied
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
- togarashi to taste
Soak the trout in the soy sauce for 2 hours in the fridge. Remove, pat dry (do not rinse) and then slick up the fish with the sesame oil on both sides. Sprinkle the togarashi on the meat side.
Barbecue the trout over a smoky fire at about 225F for about 45 minutes. Serve hot or cold.