Val’s Baked Trout

Val's Baked Lake Trout

This dish was always served on Yom Kippur. The thinking was that fish was easier to digest after the strenuous ordeal of missing a few meals! Val rarely specified quantities in her recipes but I’ve provided some guidelines. The recipe also works well with a whole salmon.


3-5 pound lake trout or salmon, boned whole by the fishmonger, bone reserved.

4 ounces of butter

2 ribs of celery, stringed, sliced

3 big fat carrots, peeled, sliced and blanched

2 large onions, chopped fine

1 tbl fresh thyme leaves

32-ounce can whole plum tomatoes

2 cups dry white wine

1 pt sour cream

½ cup parsley, minced


Preheat oven to 350°

Prepare the vegetables. Dot the fish in and out with butter. Lay it on a bed of the onion, carrot, celery and thyme in a large deep roasting pan. Cover with canned tomatoes and their juice and white wine. Put the bone in the pan along side the whole fish and bake covered until just done (start checking at 40 minutes for a five pound fish). Carefully move the whole fish to a large platter and peel the skin off the presentation side. Cover to keep warm while finishing the sauce. Remove the bone from the roasting pan and discard. Simmer the juices and vegetables to concentrate the flavors. When the vegetables are soft, purée the mixture. Whisk in the sour cream, to taste, and add the fresh parsley. Serve the fish in generous slices, with the sauce passed separately.


  • Paul Waldron says:

    Maybe ten or fifteen years ago you made a very memorable salmon around christmas. Not the same recipe as above, but the memory of it has stuck with me. It was just a medium rare fillet in my memory. I think it was probably an easy, but precise thing for you; it really made me realize that knowing what you were doing while cooking goes a lot further than throwing herbs at something. It was both a memorable dinner and one that continues to make me want to get better at my own cooking.
    So, thanks, and I will enjoy continuing to read this.

    • Lisa Gershenson says:

      Thanks so much Paul! I don’t know if you have had the chance to read ‘The Cook’s Philosophy’ yet, but I hope this will help everyone get deeper into their own cooking. Let me know if you ver have any questions. Cheers, Lisa

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