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45 mins

Brining fish is not a new technique. . .just an underutilized one. Most recipes
call for curing the fish to reduce moisture content. Brining not only raises the moisture content but provides flavor in a less time-consuming manner. While both techniques are great, I think brining is the way to go for this recipe.

In this recipe the collard greens factor in in a surprising way. The cooked collard greens get finely chopped and folded into the waffle batter for a savory surprise.

Serves 4

Posted by GMC Group Published See GMC Group's 304 projects » © 2021 Todd Richards / GMC Publications · Reproduced with permission. · SOUL by Todd Richards, published by Oxmoor House (£30.00)
  • Step 1

    Prepare the Trout: Combine 4 cups cold water, brown sugar, smoked salt, and soy sauce in a 2-quart saucepan. Cut the lemon in half, squeeze the juice, and stir into the mixture. Add the lemon halves.

  • Step 2

    Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium, and simmer until the salt and sugar are completely dissolved. Remove from the heat, and let stand 30 minutes. Add the trout fillets, and let stand in the brine 45 minutes at room temperature or 4 hours in the refrigerator.

  • Step 3

    Collard Waffles

    Microwave the butter in a small microwave-safe bowl on HIGH until melted, about
    30 seconds. Stir together the buttermilk, potlikker, melted butter, and eggs in a medium bowl. Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, kosher salt, and pepper in a separate bowl. Add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture, and stir until well incorporated and no lumps remain. Fold in the collard greens.
    2. Lightly coat a preheated waffle iron with cooking spray. Pour 1⁄2 cup batter into hot waffle iron. Cook according to a standard waffle maker’s manufacturer’s instructions until waffles are cooked through. (Don’t let the collards burn.) Makes about 8 (7-inch) round waffles
    Note: It may seem strange to require butter to be at room temperature before melting it, but it’s an important step. Cold butter melts differently—some of the butter may start to brown before the rest of it is completely melted—and that browning can impact the flavor of the final dish. Bringing the butter to room temperature before you melt it helps it melt consistently.

  • Step 4

    Remove the fish from the brine; discard brine. Pat fillets dry with paper towels. Stir together the flour, kosher salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Dredge fish in the flour mixture, shaking off any excess flour.

  • Step 5

    Heat the oil in a 10- to 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add the fish fillets, skin side down, and cook until the skin is crispy, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the fish, and cook until the fish is flaky, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain the fish on a plate lined with paper towels.

  • Step 6

    Stir together the maple syrup and hot sauce in a small bowl. Divide the waffles evenly among 4 plates. Top evenly with trout, and drizzle each with 2 tablespoons of the maple syrup mixture. Sprinkle with micro greens, and serve immediately.

    To Drink: Sauvignon Blanc, sparkling wine, Champagne, Chardonnay, rosé, Vouvray,
    Pinot Noir, Banyuls, sherry, amber beers, IPAs, or hard ciders
    Serve with: Grilled seafood or meats, poultry, or spicy dishes

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