Trout fillets with green olive and caper pesto

Mario Matassa brings us this trout dish, known in Italian as filetti di trota con pesto di olive e capperi – make it tonight!


Lake fish, like trout, naturally features strongly in the cuisine around the lakes. It was once a staple but overfishing was such that, for a time, other sources of fresh fish needed to be sought. Luckily, repopulation schemes have met with considerable success and you can once again buy fresh fish around the Italian lakes… 

Serves 4
Preparation time 15 minutes
Cooking time 10 minutes


• a large bunch of fresh parsley

• 120g green olives, stones removed

• 1 tbsp capers in vinegar

• grated zest of 1 lemon

• 4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil (plus extra for frying)

• sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

• 4 fillets of trout, perch or other freshwater fish

• 4 tbsp plain flour

• a handful of rocket leaves, to serve


1 Wash the parsley and shake dry. Place the parsley on a chopping board along with the olives and capers and chop finely (or coarsely, if you want to go for a more rustic look). 

2 Put in a bowl and add the grated lemon zest and 4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil. Season the mix with a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper and mix well with a spoon. Set aside. 

3 Wash the fish fillets in cold water and pat dry with kitchen roll. 

4 Heat some more oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. When the oil is hot, dust the fillets lightly in flour and place skin side down in the frying pan. 

5 Cook for about 4 minutes and turn; the skin should be crisp and golden. Continue cooking for another 2-3 minutes. Remove the fillets from the pan and place on kitchen roll to drain. 

6 Place two fillets on each serving plate and spoon over a few tsp of the pesto. Decorate with a few rocket leaves and serve immediately.

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