It seems that I'm still having a hard time convincing people to try sumac because people can't escape the word association with the decidedly non-edible poison sumac. I took both my za'atar spice blend and sumac applesauce to the last Mile High Swappers meeting, and nearly had to beg people to trade for them. My friend from Formation of a Foodie told me afterward that perhaps I should have put in an extra reminder that culinary sumac is delicious and tart, and that I'm not in the habit of feeding people poison.
It's a shame because sumac is one of my favorite spices. I use it all winter long in every recipe where I need to give food a tangy high note. I think of it as my "local lemon." And the sumac that I collected this year is far and away the finest I've ever taste, exponentially stronger than the sumac I recently tried at a spice shop. I'm glad I collected a ton of it, because I seem to be using it in my cooking most every night.
Sumac is an especially nice accent on fish. Think of how good a squirt of fresh lemon juice tastes atop fish; sumac adds a similar flavor. I particularly like this recipe because the sumac was collected on the banks of the same river where the trout were caught. Talk about a natural pairing!
Rub your trout down with bacon grease. Then generously dust them with salt, black pepper, and sumac powder, inside and out. It is particularly important to season the inside of the body cavity, in order to maximize flavor.
Grill the sumac-dusted trout over a low flame until gently browned and cooked through, approximately 12 minutes. Test for doneness by seeing if the flesh easily pulls away from the bone.
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I'm sharing this recipe with Fight Back Friday. If you like simple, wholesome recipes, go ahead and click through.