Steelhead Trout Baked Whole in Sea Salt


Preparation info

  • Serve

    4 to 6

    unless otherwise stated.
    • Difficulty


Appears in

Two Fat Ladies Obsessions

Two Fat Ladies Obsessions

By Jennifer Paterson and Clarissa Dickson Wright

Published 1999

  • About

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.


  • 1 steelhead trout, scaled and cleaned
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • A large bunch of fresh fennel leaves and stalks


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