It's often thought of strictly as a holiday go-to, but why limit smoked trout's culinary mojo? Keep this versatile and budget-friendly (yet still sophisticated) alternative to smoked salmon in your fridge year-round. There are two broad categories: smoked freshwater trout, which is off-white and flaky, and smoked ocean trout, which has orangey-pink flesh and a richer, more buttery texture.
Whichever variety you choose, the fish is wonderful as the protein in a salad, folded into an omelet or scrambled eggs, or used for brandade instead of salt cod. It's also an ideal ingredient when company drops by with little or no advance notice. Because while these tasty, charming bites look as though they took hours to make, they're actually on the fast and easy side -- but who needs to know?