Sauerkraut with Fish in Cream Sauce

  • Serves

    serves 2


Traditionally, choucroute au poisson was a dish made in Alsatian riverside villages, but today restaurants throughout Alsace serve a version in which filets of flaky, white-fleshed fish such as pike perch are pan-fried or poached and served on a bed of choucroute and topped with a creamy riesling sauce. We found that trout works beautifully, too.


  • 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 (¼-lb.) piece smoked bacon, cut into ½" cubes
  • 4 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp. finely chopped thyme leaves
  • ½ tsp. cumin seeds
  • 2 pods star anise
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ lb. raw Sauerkraut, drained and rinsed
  • 1¼ cups white wine, preferably dry riesling
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 (6-8-oz.) boneless skin-on trout filets
  • ¼ cups flour, sifted
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • ½ cups heavy cream
  • Chervil leaves, for garnish (optional)


Step 1

Heat 1 tbsp. oil in a 10" skillet over medium-high heat. Add bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and crisp, about 8 minutes. Pour off all but 1 tbsp. fat. Reduce heat to medium and add half the shallots along with the thyme, cumin, star anise, and bay leaf and cook, stirring occasionally, until shallots are soft, about 4 minutes. Stir in the sauerkraut, ½ cup wine, and ⅓ cup water and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, cover skillet, reduce heat to low, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauerkraut softens and the flavors meld, about 25 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and set aside; discard bay leaf and star anise. Keep warm.

Step 2

Season trout filets with salt and pepper. Put flour on a plate and dredge trout in flour, shaking off excess. Heat remaining oil in a 12" nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until almost smoking. Add trout skin side down and cook, flipping once, until golden brown and cooked through, 4-6 minutes. Transfer trout to a plate and loosely cover with foil. Return skillet to medium-high heat and add 2 tbsp. butter and remaining shallots. Cook until shallots are soft, about 4 minutes. Remove skillet from heat, pour in remaining wine, and cook until wine is almost evaporated, about 4 minutes. Add heavy cream and cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, remove from heat, and stir in remaining butter. To serve, divide sauerkraut between 2 plates and top each with trout. Spoon sauce around fish and garnish with chervil.

Continue to Next Story

Want more SAVEUR?

Get our favorite recipes, stories, and more delivered to your inbox.