We all love to eat with our hands. It appeals to our inner child and leaves us satisfied and smiling. One of my favorite ways to eat with my hands is to create burritos using leafy, green lettuce leaves. This is a Korean manner of eating. The freshness and crunchy texture of the pods of lettuce offers such a great vessel for stuffing with greasy grilled meats, unctuous seafood, rice, kimchi, other pickled vegetables, sauces, and more. I am utterly addicted to this manner of eating, and it is such a delight to unveil at dinner parties.
I love to create these Korean inspired lettuce wraps with fatty fishes. If you’re a huge fan of salmon, like me, you ought to give steelhead trout a try. It is similar in taste and texture, and is almost always in full supply at Costco.
This recipe takes the fun of eating with our hands and fill its full of Korean and French-inspired flavors. We will first create a beurre blanc of sorts to coat the fish. This is typically a reduce white wine/vinegar sauce with tons of butter. We kick the beurre blanc up an Asian notch with ginger and soy sauce flavors. We then also introduce honey, in order to create a glaze that will caramelize the steelhead trout in the oven. The roasted steelhead trout with the ginger soy beurre blanc flavors are tasty in themselves, but then heightened with a scallion-fresno chili topping, rice, and the lettuce wrap in this bombastic recipe.
Roasted Steelhead Trout Lettuce Wrap ingredients:
- 2-3 lbs of steelhead trout filet or salmon filet, skin on preferably
Ginger Soy Sauce Beurre Blanc ingredients:
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1 thumb-sized knob of ginger, peeled & minced
- 1 thumb-sized knob of ginger, peeled and sliced in half
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 1 lemon, cut in half
- 3-4 tablespoons of honey
- 1 stick of butter, cold, unsalted, and cubed
- Salt & pepper
Scallion and fresno chili salsa ingredients:
- 1 cup of diced scallions
- 2 red fresno chilies sliced, with seeds removed
- 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
- Salt & pepper
- 2-3 cups of cooked white rice
- 1 head of Boston Bibb lettuce (aka Butter lettuce)
- Sriracha sauce
Steelhead Trout Asian Lettuce Wraps Recipe
Get the party started by preparing the rice first. Using either a rice machine or in a pot over the stove, make sure to have enough water over the rice. To test, place your palm flat on top of the rice. If the water does not rise above your knuckles, you require more water. This will ensure one’s rice is more Korean and Japanese style – wetter. For perfect instructions to cooking rice over the stove, check out here.
As the rice steams, we move on to preparing the sauce that will drown the steelhead trout as it roasts. Place a sauce pan over medium-high heat and add some olive oil as the pan comes up to heat. Then add and sweat the minced shallots and ginger. When the vegetables are aromatic and translucent, pour in the white wine. We want to have the white wine reduce by 3/4. This will take 5-10 minutes and in the process, cook out some of the alcohol flavor.
Afterward, add the soy sauce, knob of ginger, lemon juice then the actual lemon, and honey to the pan. We want this also to reduce and have the flavors marry and concentrate. This will take another 5-10 minutes. Taste test your concoction and adjust the reasonings to your liking. If it is too salty, try whisking in more honey. Turn off the heat and remove the lemon and knob of sliced ginger. Then slowly whisk in the cold & cubed butter. This will transform the ginger soy sauce mixture into a velvety, rich and shiny sauce.
As we wrap up the ginger soy sauce beurre blanc, pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees. Season both sides of the fish and place the steelhead trout (or salmon) in a large baking dish, skin side down. Pour the ginger soy sauce beurre blanc all over the steelhead trout and pop it in the oven. We want to cook the fish until it is about Medium in doneness. None of this overcooking non-sense here, and ideally, you want to cook this fatty fish in a similar manner to how you would cook beef steak. The cooking time will be approximately 15-20 minutes.
As the fish cooks, prepare the scallion and fresno chili salsa by combining all the ingredients.
When the steelhead trout is to your liking, get your feast ready. Korean style, we place all the components on a table. The Boston Bibb, the rice, the fish, the salsa, the hot sauce, the left-over ginger soy sauce beurre blanc, etc. Roll up your sleeves, and start making your lettuce wraps!