How do you prepare and cook your trout while backpacking?

Have a favorite trail recipe or technique you'd like to share? Please do! We also like reviews of various trail food products out there. The Backcountry Food Topix forum is the place to discuss all things related to food and nourishment while in the Sierra wilderness (as well as favorite trail head eateries).
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markskor
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Post by markskor » Mon Feb 12, 2007 9:03 pm

Freestone writes: "The big Rainbows and Goldens in the alpine lakes...their meat is tough and mushy."

Pardon my confusion...but, this statement of yours above is wrong, a bit conflicted, and not at all consistant with my own meager backcountry experiences.
Up high and deep in, I have found the wild meat (1 - 2 pounders) firm, often pink in color, and very flavorful. It is only the stockers, freshly planted down below, however, that often taste like Purina Trout Chow...and should be avoided. These colorless and "tail-less" (sure signs) trout are indeed mushy, soft, and tastless.
Mark


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Post by freestone » Mon Feb 12, 2007 10:52 pm

You are right Mark, the taste of stocked trout is not on par with native, or wild trout, and it is paradoxical to be " tough and mushy" at the same time. I went a little off topic and tried to make a case for satisfying our desire for fresh trout with catches taken from stocks that are plentiful and in need of culling. Alpine lake stocks IMHO do not fall into this category, and will become even more scarce as they become candidates for frog reintroduction. The DFG has not imposed any special regulations for these lakes, so it is a personal decision of when and where to practice C&R. I respect those who enjoy the taste of their catch, regardless of elevation, they certainly are entitled to it according to the law. My poaching recipe is legitimate however especially with stoves that do not simmer well. Pour off the water before adding the oil and seasoning or you will end up with something that is tough and mushy! :)
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Post by gary c. » Tue Feb 13, 2007 10:14 am

Thanks' for the suggestions. I will give poaching a try. :nod:
Gary C.

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Post by mountaineer » Tue Feb 13, 2007 12:31 pm

cmon4day wrote:The easiest way to cook your trout is to wrap them in aluminum foil and throw them onto some glowing coals from the fire. About 5-7 a side and they are done. Fast, easy, and they taste goooood.

Vic
Ditto. My extravagance in backcountry cooking is usually a container of squeeze butter and a container of seasoned salt. I wrap the trout in the foil, smothered in a mixture of butter and seasoned salt, do the 5-7/side and then enjoy.

huts

Post by huts » Sat Mar 24, 2007 7:40 pm

We used to roll them in cornmeal and then fry but to lighten my pack (now traveling alone) I have gone to poaching in water and tamari sauce. Large fish have to be chunked as my pot is not large.

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Post by gary c. » Sat Mar 24, 2007 10:09 pm

I went ahead and ordered on of the saucepans linked below so that I can give poaching a try when I will be in the no campfire areas. Beetween it and my MSR titanium pot they still wiegh less than the pot I carried in the past.
Gary C.

http://www.rei.com/outlet/product/48125 ... _HIKING_SA

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Post by freestone » Sun Mar 25, 2007 7:45 pm

Here is a sample recipe and technique, non backpacking version. These recipes can be service hot or cold so if it doesn't all get eaten at dinner, the leftovers could be lunch the next day. (hold the mayo until serving, use only the mayo packets)

http://www.toptrout.co.uk/acatalog/Topt ... on_34.html
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Post by giantbrookie » Mon Mar 26, 2007 1:06 pm

[quote="gary c."]I went ahead and ordered on of the saucepans linked below so that I can give poaching a try when I will be in the no campfire areas. Beetween it and my MSR titanium pot they still wiegh less than the pot I carried in the past.
Gary C.

As noted in my earlier post, I essentially poach my fish when in no campfire areas (as does Huts), but I think the key is to use only enough water as necessary. Too much and it is essentially boiled and you lose flavor. Too little, of course and you burn on the bottom before the fish is completely cooked. Similar to Huts I use a sauce (teriyaki, which is pretty similar to tamari sauce), and I also use oil and add a bit of water only if necessary: If I'm getting a bunch of small brookies (cleaned and sitting in the lake on a stringer, say) from the water and flopping them into my pot, there is enough extra water slopping into the pot (along with the fish). If I'm chunking a big fella or two and throwing the chunks into the pot I usually add a smidgen of water in addition to the sauce and oil. The perfect balance is for all the excess liquid to be nearly boiled off right at the time the fish is cooked. Then you have some yummy crunchy stuff on the bottom and not a bunch of excess fish soup slopping around. The oil (olive oil is nice, but even regular vegetable oil such as canola is OK) really enhances the flavor (in by book) in addition to boosting the number of calories (always a good thing while backpacking). Oil is both good and bad when it comes to cleaning. The good, with an old regular lightweight aluminum pot w/o non stick coating (such as mine) is that it keeps the fish from sticking too much. The bad is that, well, it's oily.
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Post by Lightning Dog » Fri Jun 29, 2007 11:27 am

I just had my first experience catching and enjoying trout while backpacking. Below Register Creek and then above Waterwheel Falls along the Tuolumne River last week we caught 8" Rainbows and a couple of 10" Browns.
While we hadn't counted on fish for dinner, we had our fingers crossed and I took foil, olive oil, and a tube of Pesto just in case. It turns out that we also had a small frying pan along. First night we pan fried in olive oil. Second night we steamed in foil and Pesto sauce. Both were great!! Also made cheese and pesto quesadillos. Best camp food I've had in a long, long time.

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Post by mountaineer » Fri Jun 29, 2007 12:27 pm

Lightning Dog wrote:I just had my first experience catching and enjoying trout while backpacking.
You have finally LIVED!

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