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Beet Pesto Splake

Serves 4.


    Beet Pesto Splake

    Splake is a hybrid species of brook trout crossed with lake trout; it has a mild, slightly buttery flavour. As a cold-water fish in the trout family, it also contains some of the same heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Pair it with this highly flavourful beet sauce and tender-crisp carrots and you have a dish with a fetching presentation worthy of even the fanciest restaurants.


    Other fish to try

    Outside of Ontario, splake can be hard to come by, so consider fillets of arctic char, rainbow trout, steelhead, or wild salmon as great substitutes.


    Extra pesto can be stirred into pasta. It also makes for a standout sandwich spread.


    Beet Pesto Splake


    • 3/4 lb (350 g) red beets (about 3 medium sized)
    • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
    • 1/4 cup (60 mL) fresh dill
    • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) prepared horseradish
    • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
    • Juice of 1/2 lemon
    • 1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt
    • 3 Tbsp (45 mL) extra-virgin olive oil or camelina oil
    • 1 1/2 lbs (750 g) splake fillets (or see ìOther fish to tryî)
    • Salt and black pepper, to taste
    • 1 lb (450 g) bag baby carrots
    • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) unblanched sliced almonds, toasted


    Per serving:

    • calories460
    • protein38g
    • fat25g
      • saturated fat5g
      • trans fat0g
    • carbohydrates21g
      • sugars12g
      • fibre6g
    • sodium371mg



    Preheat oven to 400 F (200 C). Toss beets with 1 tsp (5 mL) oil. Place on sheet of parchment paper and wrap tightly to seal. Place on baking sheet. Place in oven and heat until beets are tender, about 25 minutes. Remove from sheet and set aside until cool enough to handle. Peel, then chop into 1/2 in (1.25 cm) pieces.


    Blend cooked beets in food processor container with dill, horseradish, garlic, lemon juice, and salt. Wipe down sides of container and then, with machine running, pour 3 Tbsp (45 mL) oil in through feed tube until incorporated. Set aside.


    Line baking sheet with parchment paper large enough to hold fish and carrots in a single layer. Toss carrots with 2 tsp (10 mL) oil and place on sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until they begin to colour and are starting to slightly golden. Remove from oven and slide carrots to the side using a spatula. Place fish on pan. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.


    Return pan to oven and bake for 12 minutes, or until fish is just cooked through in the centre and carrots are tender.


    Place fish and carrots on serving platter and scatter with beet pesto and almonds.


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    This recipe is part of the Go (Ice) Fish collection.



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    B12-rich mussels are a very good and economical source of protein and iron. Steamed mussels are a classic way to enjoy seafood—and so is this rich, aromatic broth of tomato, fennel, and saffron. Be sure to allow saffron to fully infuse to get the full flavour benefit, and finish off the dish with the fragrant fennel fronds. Sustainability status Farmed mussels are considered highly sustainable due to their low impacts on the environment. They are easy to harvest, require no fertilizer or fresh water, and don’t need to be fed externally, as they get all their nutritional requirements from their marine environment. Mussel prep Selection: Look for mussels with shiny, tightly closed shells that smell of the sea. If shells are slightly open, give them a tap. Live mussels will close immediately. Storage: Keep mussels in the fridge in a shallow pan laid on top of ice. Keep them out of water and cover with a damp cloth. Ideally, consume on the day you buy them, but within two days. They need to breathe, so never keep them in a sealed plastic bag. Cleanup: In addition to being sustainable, farmed mussels tend to require less cleaning than wild mussels. Most of the fibrous “beards” that mussels use to grip solid surfaces will have been removed before sale. But if a few remain, they’re easily dispatched: grasp the beard with your thumb and forefinger and pull it toward the hinge of the mussel and give it a tug. Afterward, give mussels a quick rinse and scrub away any areas of mud or seaweed, which, with farmed mussels, will require minimal work.