Watercress Salad with Sautéed Rainbow Trout, Manchego and Toasted Almonds

Watercress Salad with Sautéed Rainbow Trout, Manchego and Toasted Almonds

Serves 4

The spicy flare of watercress and piquant flavors of Manchego give the mildness of fresh trout a delicious lift. Pair with California Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Gris.


  • 2 (1-pound/450 g each) whole rainbow trout, cleaned, with scales, head and tail removed*
  • salt and ground black pepper, for sprinkling the trout
  • 1/3 cup (20 g) roughly chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced into six rounds
  • 2 tablespoons (30 g) unsalted butter
  • 5 tablespoons (75 ml) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) spicy style mustard
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) salt
  • 4 cups (100 g) watercress, with one inch (2.5 cm) of stem left on
  • 2/3 cup (55 g) sliced almonds, toasted
  • sliced almonds, toasted and salted
  • 1 piece (about 2 1/2 ounces/75 g) Manchego cheese

* Your local fish purveyor will gladly clean, scale and remove the head and tail of any fish at your request.


  • Sprinkle the trout generously with salt and pepper, inside and out.
  • Sprinkle half the parsley into the cavity of one trout and half into the other.
  • Place three lemon slices in the cavity of each trout.
  • Heat the butter and two tablespoons (30 ml) of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • When the butter starts to sizzle, place the fish in the pan.
  • Cook trout for 6 minutes on each side. Cover the skillet and remove from heat.
  • To make the lime dressing, whisk the lime juice, vinegar, mustard, honey and the salt in a small bowl.
  • Gradually whisk in the remaining 3 tablespoons (45 ml) olive oil.
  • In a large bowl, toss the watercress with four tablespoons (60 ml) of the lime dressing.
  • To serve, divide the watercress among four plates.
  • Remove the trout from the skillet and place them on a cutting board.
  • Use the side of a fork to scrape the skin from one trout. Use a spatula to lift the filet and place it on a serving of watercress.
  • Remove the bone and transfer the second filet to a serving of watercress. Repeat with the second trout.
  • Add the remaining dressing to the skillet and bring to a simmer.
  • Drizzle each serving with warm dressing.
  • Garnish with almonds and shave desired amount of cheese on top using a vegetable peeler.

/ Pairing Suggestions

Showing 1 - 10 of 31 results
  • Barbera

    Pair with smoked salmon, grilled mozzarella and prosciutto, and flatbread with fresh tomato, basil and roasted garlic. 

  • Cabernet Franc

    Pair with a classic beef stew, aged Gouda, and rosemary-rubbed pork tenderloin.

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    Pair with grass-fed beef, whether grilled, roasted, braised or stir-fried.

  • Chardonnay

    Pair with white fish, shellfish and free-range chicken – especially with creamy, buttery sauces.

  • Chenin Blanc

    Pair with seared scallops, chicken in coconut curry, or sliced ripe pears with fresh or slightly aged sheep’s milk cheeses.

  • Dessert wines

    Pair with nuts—almonds and hazelnuts—as well as chocolate tortes, vanilla custard, peach cobbler and ricotta cheesecake. In general, aim to pair sweet dessert wines with sweet desserts, and light dessert wines with light desserts.

  • Gewürztraminer

    Pair with smoked white fish, spicy stir-fried dishes, or slightly sweet desserts.

  • Grenache

    Pair with any grilled shellfish as well as salami, sliced ham and other charcuterie.

  • Grenache Blanc

    Pair with crab, squid, or clams with garlic butter as well as grilled snapper with lemon zest.

  • Malbec

    Pair with classic rack of lamb, beef fajitas, and roasted root vegetables.

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