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Ruby trout?

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  • Sarah C Jul 5, 2002 09:45 AM
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Is there really such a thing as ruby trout? The other day a big group had lunch at House of Blues in New Orleans. One of the specials was described as trout. Several people ordered it, including the person sitting across the table from me. When it arrived she was dismayed to see that it looked exactly like salmon, which she doesn't like. She offered me a bite and I thought it was pretty bland so I wasn't certain what it was, but it was the exact color of salmon.

The waiter was consulted, and the chef came out and told us that it was trout indeed, something called "ruby trout." Has anyone heard of this? Or is it a fancy new name for something else?

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  1. They sell this at my local supermarket as "farm-raised" trout. I think it's color is due to the diet it is fed -- heavy on whatever part of shrimp it is that makes them pink. I've found it to be pretty good texture-wise, but a little disappointing flavor-wise. Quite bland -- but this is what a lot of non-adventurous eaters are looking for in fish -- no offensive odors or excessively "fishy" taste. Kinda dull for those of us who prefer things like the dark belly meat of bluefish and the like.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Fargo

      Sounds like rainbow trout, which has the delicate pink color of salmon with a much milder flavor. BTW, as it is a fresh-water fish, I'd be hard pressed to believe that its pink color comes from feasting on shrimp...

      1. re: GG Mora

        Hey -- wouldn't be the first time I've been hoodwinked by the Stop and Shop fishmonger!! But his theory did make a certain amount of sense (at least to me) if trout are anything like flamingos (they eat pink shrimp and thusly turn pink), and if fish farmers feed fresh water fish ocean based food, which I imagine might be plausible....maybe....

        In any case, it's a perfectly acceptable, if not terribly exciting fish option in my book. Broiled with butter and lots of lemon pepper is a yummy option.

        1. re: Fargo

          Don't forget the capers. :^}

    2. There are two basic kinds of trout--anadromous, which, like salmon, spawn in fresh water but live in salt water. These, including steelhead trout and some rainbow trout, are closely related to salmon and are considered a challenge to fly fish.

      Then there are the strictly freshwater kind, like speckled trout, which I think generally taste better. Some trout have been known to become anadromous within a generation or two, which is what happened in South America when they seeded the rivers with freshwater trout. Steelhead trout and salmon trout, both of which have pink flesh, have less flavor IMO than good salmon or good freshwater trout. And I think all of these types can be farmed, which probably makes them all taste like bland salmon.