Salmon & Trout


Salmon and trout have a different appearance from the outside, yet when filleting them you will find they are similar in flesh texture and bone structure. Similar preparation techniques are used for both. Members of both the trout and salmon family are being farmed successfully and are very popular.

Salmon are divided into two groups: Pacific and Atlantic. The six varieties of Pacific salmon are kin (chinook); sockeye (red salmon); coho (silver salmon), which has a light colored flesh with a delicate flavor; pink salmon; chum (dog salmon), and cherry salmon (found only on the Asian side of the Pacific). The Atlantic salmon has a lighter flesh and is slightly fattier than Pacific salmon. All salmon are similar in appearance. They have small heads, silvery skin with different markings and can weigh up to 100 pounds. The farmed salmon is becoming popular due to its consistency and availability, but its flavor has not approached that of wild salmon.

Trout can live in both fresh or salt water. The most sought-after trout is the fresh-water rainbow trout. On the pacific coast of the United States the rainbow trout travels the water ways to the Pacific where it thrives in the salt water, becoming the steelhead trout. These trout can grow to 50 pounds with a pink, tasty flesh. It is often smoked or served fresh, and has a caviar with a fine reputation. Other trouts include the brook trout, pink spotted Dolly Varden trout and speckled trout. The lake trout or gray trout, native to Canada and North America, is fattier than most.

The habitat and food supply effect the taste, texture and color of the meat of both fish. The pink tone of the farm- raised fish is due to their controlled diet. In the wild this color comes from the crustaceans found in the waters where these fish are found.

Poaching and steaming are good preparation methods for this group of fish, serving them with broth-based sauces. Sautéing, broiling, poaching and baking are also used often. Salmon is one fish which can hold up to braising. Pate, terrines and mousselines are great ways to use up scraps or by-products and are popular on menus.

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