Trout in Sage Brown Butter with Hearts of Palm Salad

At Topsoil restaurant in Travelers Rest, South Carolina, chef Adam Cooke takes advantage of the crops his business partner Wendy Lynam tends on her nearby front-yard farm to gussy up the dish with wilted greens and herbs. Ask your fishmonger to butterfly your trout, which removes the bones without separating the fillets.This trout with brown butter sauce is served with a salad made with fresh hearts of palm, but canned hearts of palm are a good substitute.

Trout in Sage Brown Butter with Hearts of Palm Salad
Photo: Greg DuPree
Active Time:
50 mins
Total Time:
50 mins


  • 4 ounces small potatoes

  • 1 small lemon, halved, divided

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced, divided

  • 2 tablespoons fresh sage, coarsely chopped

  • 2 whole trout (about 6 ounces each), butterflied

  • ¼ teaspoon salt, divided

  • ¼ teaspoon ground pepper, divided

  • 1 ½ teaspoons grapeseed oil

  • ½ cup hearts of palm, rinsed and sliced

  • 1 small shallot, thinly sliced

  • 1 ½ teaspoons capers, rinsed

  • ½ cup arugula or mizuna


  1. Place potatoes in a small saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a simmer over high heat, then reduce heat to maintain a simmer. Cook until tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Drain and let cool. Cut into 1/2-inch pieces. Set aside.

  2. Meanwhile, place 1 lemon half, cut-side down, in a small saucepan. Add half the butter and cook over medium-high heat, whisking occasionally, until it browns slightly and begins to smell nutty, about 3 minutes. Add the rest of the butter and continue cooking, whisking often, until all the butter is caramel in color, about 2 minutes more. Add sage and remove from heat. Cover to keep warm and set aside.

  3. Preheat oven to 250°F. Place a wire rack on a baking sheet and place in the oven.

  4. Pat trout dry and sprinkle both sides with 1/8 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large skillet on high heat. Add 1 trout, skin-side down. Lower heat to medium-low and spoon 1 tablespoon of the brown butter over the fish. Cook, basting the fish with the butter, until the skin is crispy, about 3 minutes. Flip and cook for 1 minute more. Transfer the fish to the oven to keep warm. Repeat with the remaining trout and 1 tablespoon butter.

  5. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter, the reserved potatoes and hearts of palm to the pan. Cook over medium heat, stirring gently, until heated through, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and add shallot, capers and greens. Toss to slightly wilt the greens. Serve the salad with the trout and the remaining lemon half cut into wedges.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

454 Calories
29g Fat
15g Carbs
32g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 2
Serving Size 1 trout & 1 cup salad
Calories 454
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 15g 5%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 32g 64%
Total Fat 29g 37%
Saturated Fat 13g 65%
Cholesterol 136mg 45%
Sodium 656mg 29%
Potassium 1031mg 22%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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