THIS dish has been a firm favourite in the bar at Noosa Beach House.
We are changing the menu soon so here's the recipe to make it at home.
Inspired by my many trips through Thailand, the salad has the perfect combination of aromatic crunchiness and spice to complement the smokiness of the ocean trout.
You can serve it with betel leaves for a tasty canape or on its own. So simple to prepare, it's the perfect dish to see out the end of the warm weather.
Smoked trout and Asian salad with nam jim
Nam jim - 4 red bird's eye chillies
4 garlic cloves, peeled
6 coriander roots, cleaned
50g palm sugar or brown sugar
pinch of salt
1 kaffir lime leaf, centre vein removed, coarsely chopped
2cm piece lemongrass root, bruised and chopped
50ml strained lime juice
150ml fish sauce
Salad - 2 fresh long fresh red chillies, halved, seeded and cut into julienne
600g smoked ocean trout
2 red Asian shallots, thinly sliced
4 spring onions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
1 Lebanese cucumber, halved lengthways and thinly sliced on the diagonal
½ green papaw, peeled, seeded and cut into julienne (about 1 cup)
4 kaffir lime leaves centre veins removed, very thinly sliced
¼ cup picked mint leaves
250g cherry tomatoes, quartered
1 small bunch coriander, leaves picked
salt and pepper, to taste
12 betel leaves to serve (2 per serve), rinsed and stalks removed
METHOD: To make the nam jim dressing, place all the ingredients except the lime juice and fish sauce in a mortar and pestle and pound until a smooth paste forms.
Add the lime juice, then season with fish sauce.
The dressing should have a balance of salty, sour, sweet and hot.
Balance the flavour with the sugar, fish sauce or lime as necessary.
Hot-smoked ocean trout can be found in all supermarkets and seafood shops, usually in 150g serves.
Gently pull apart the fish into flakes.
Place all the salad ingredients in a bowl and add enough nam jim dressing to lightly coat.
Gently toss through the flaked fish, then serve the salad in a bowl with the betel leaves and any remaining dressing on the side for guests to help themselves.
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