Kettle-cooked trout with fennel, dill and orange

James Tanner puts the kettle on to poach a light and luscious supper of trout with a delicate aniseed and orange stuffing
By James Tanner
Kettle-cooked trout with fennel, dill and orange
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Effort: medium



  • 300 g rainbow trout, or brown trout, gutted and scaled
  • 1 heads fennel, thinly sliced
  • 0.5 bunches chopped dill
  • 2 oranges, zest and juice
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 bay leaves
  • 350 ml white wine
  • 600 ml water
  • 50 g butter


1. Score diagonal lines across both sides of the fish with a sharp knife - be careful not to cut too deeply into the flesh.2. Mix together the fennel, dill and orange juice in a bowl. Fill the gut cavity of the trout with the fennel mix, and rub the orange zest into the scored sides of fish. 3. Sprinkle the sliced shallots over the base of the fish kettle, and add the star anise and bay leaf. Lay the fish on top and cover with the wine and water. 4. Put the lid on the kettle and bring to a gentle simmer. Poach the trout for five minutes, turning the fish halfway through cooking. Remove from the heat and leave to stand for eight minutes - the trout should be gently poached and tender. Remove the fish and keep warm. 5. Pour 200ml of the poaching liquor through a fine sieve and into a frying pan. Bring to a boil and reduce by one quarter. Turn off the heat and gradually whisk in the cold butter. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Slice the fish to serve, drizzle with a little of the sauce, and accompany with new season potatoes.

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