Trout ceviche tostadas with avocado crema

Dancing with heat and acidity, this trout ceviche is piled onto crisp tostadas with silky avocado crema and makes for the perfect summer supper

Serves 2-3

Preparation time 15 minutes

Cooking time 5 minutes

What makes a fish fashionable? Not in the sense of a well-dressed seabass, but in terms of what draws people into buying the same fish again and again and again. The truthful answer is that we Brits are creatures of habit – 80% of all seafood and fish we consume comes from just five species – salmon, cod, haddock, prawns and tuna. We reach for the same vacuum-packed fillets simply because they’re in front of us, and we like what we know – but there’s no reason why we shouldn’t cast our nets a little wider and give the lesser-known species in our seas and rivers some well-deserved attention.

In the same way that Matthew McConaughey went from a jaded rom-com regular to a mainstay in critically acclaimed blockbusters, fish too can have a reputational overhaul. Take the coley; once reduced to cat food, it now makes as worthy an addition to a basket of fish and chips as cod or haddock, costs up to 40% less than cod and is caught using low bycatch nets. Or the Torbay sole, which, thanks to the rebrand from its original name of witch, has been flying off the shelves as a cheaper, more sustainable alternative to the coveted Dover sole.

But today, we’re here to talk about the chalkstream trout – a heritage British fish. Thanks to its orange flesh and rich flavour it's the perfect substitute for salmon – one of the most expensive, overfarmed, and unsustainable fish to eat that accounts for a whopping 30% of all fish sales in Billingsgate Market. Harvested by hand in the chalk streams of Test and Itchen in Hampshire, these fish spent their lives swimming against the fast-flowing waters, making them lean and much less muddy tasting compared to rainbow trout, thanks to the natural filtration of chalk.

There’s no better way to use really fresh, good-quality trout than in ceviche balanced with plenty of lime, chilli and coriander. Here, it's piled high onto crisp tostadas with silky avocado crema, making it the perfect al fresco supper when paired with a cold Pacifico and your pals. If you, too, are plagued by the distinct lack of corn tortillas in British supermarkets, fear not, as these tostadas work just as well with the dreaded wheat wrap. Cut into small circles and fry in oil, and you have yourself a golden tostada. Just try not to get flashbacks of the heinous university fajita fests of yore when you open that pack of Old El Paso.

Ingredients

  • Vegetable oil
  • Pack of small tortillas – if you can only find large wraps cut them into small circles with a 10cm diameter

Avocado crema:

  • 15g fresh coriander
  • 150g creme fraiche
  • 1 avocado
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Salt

Trout ceviche:

  • 2 medium banana shallots, finely sliced
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped
  • 15g fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 trout fillets (around 480g), cut into 1cm chunks

Method

  1. First, make the tostadas. Heat 200ml vegetable oil in a saucepan on high heat. To test if the oil is hot enough, dip a wooden chopstick into the oil – if small bubbles form around the wood, it’s ready for frying. Fry the tortillas one by one for around 20 seconds on each side until golden brown, flipping regularly with tongs for an even colour. Remove from the oil and place onto a baking sheet lined with kitchen paper.
  2. To make the avocado crema, blitz all the ingredients in a blender until smooth. Season with salt to taste.
  3. To make the ceviche, mix the chilli, shallots, coriander, lime juice, salt and sugar in a medium-sized bowl. Add the trout to the bowl and mix.
  4. To assemble the tostadas, spread each one with avocado crema before topping with a spoonful of trout ceviche. Dig in.

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