Whole Baked Trout with Orange and Pancetta
Yep. We approve of this porkification of fish. It only improves this already tasty (and pretty) dish. Baked trout is so simple you’ll wonder why you don’t make it more often. The cumin and oregano seasons the fish simply without overwhelming it’s delicate flavor. Topped with roasted onions, torn pieces of pancetta, cilantro and chiles, this makes for an elegant dinner with almost no work.
See Cook’s Note on ordering trout.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Scatter the orange and red onion slices on a baking sheet. Drizzle with a little oil and some salt and pepper and toss to coat. Stir the olive oil, cumin, oregano, salt and black pepper in a small bowl. Spoon half the spiced oil in each trout cavity, getting both sides. Place 2 pancetta slices in the cavity of each fish. Place the trout on top of the oranges and onions. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Pour the wine over the trout. Bake until the skin begins to brown a little and the fish flakes easily, 20 to 25 minutes.
Remove the skin. Plate one fillet per person. Let the orange slices cool a bit, and then squeeze some roasted orange juice over each fillet. Sprinkle with a little more salt. Tear the pancetta into pieces and divide among the fillets. Divide the onions among the fillets. Scatter cilantro and serrano over the top and serve.
Most fish stores or fish mongers would be thrilled to sell you a book-boned, head-on trout. But in the instance you can’t find one with a head and tail, ask for skin-on boneless fillets. Just sandwich the filling between the fleshy sides of the fillet with the skin sides facing out. The skin will protect the delicate meat of the fish as it cooks.