I think it was the Chinese who first cooked a whole fish, or indeed a whole chicken or other type of poultry, in a mountain of sea salt. It looks very impressive, and in the case of fish makes it a lot easier to get it right and not over-cook your fish. It is very important to use coarse sea salt, or it will not form a crust.
Season the inside of the trout well with salt and pepper, and fill the stomach cavity with the fennel leaves and stalks (unchopped). Cover the bottom of a large roasting pan with a layer of salt, ½ inch deep. Place the trout on top of the salt. Pile the rest of the salt over the fish so that it is completely covered by at least ½ inch all over. Don’t worry if the head and tail protrude slightly. Sprinkle a little water over the salt.
Put in a
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