Lydia's Kitchen Blog

Cornmeal Fried Trout with Bacon and Maple Syrup

If you fish, chances are you know that spring is trout season. There are four ponds on Crown Maple Farm, and Robb and our youngest daughter, Ava, like to fish. They usually don’t catch much, but they have a great time anyway. Maddie and I just cook them and eat them. And we all enjoy trout at some of the local restaurants in Millbrook, near Crown Maple Farm in Dutchess County, New York.

Even if you don’t catch your own, trout is an excellent addition to your diet – and it tastes great with Crown Maple Syrup.

According to the American Heart Association, fish is a good source of protein that’s not high in saturated fat. Fish provides omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to have cardiovascular (heart) and other health benefits. The AHA recommends two servings of fatty fish – such as trout – a week. Get more information about AHA recommendations.

So, whether you catch your own or hook some fillets at the local grocery store, try this trout recipe and let me know what you and your family think!

Cornmeal Fried Trout with Bacon and Maple Syrup

Cornmeal Fried Trouth with Bacon and Maple SyrupThere’s nothing like trout fried in a well-seasoned cast-iron skillet with some bacon fat. This honey-sage butter is a little different; it adds a lightly sweet, woodsy note to the fish and balances the salty bacon. Try this with Winter Root Slaw and a puddle of grits made with the same stone-ground cornmeal used to coat the fish. Serves 4.


16 large fresh sage leaves
3 tablespoons unsalted butter (room temperature)
2 teaspoons Crown Maple Syrup
3/4 cup yellow or white cornmeal (preferably stone ground)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
freshly ground pepper to taste
1 large white egg
2 teaspoons water
4 brook or rainbow trout fillets (6-8 oz each)
6 pieces thick cut bacon (about 6 oz.)


  1. Finely chop four of the sage leaves and mix with 1 tablespoon of the butter and the maple syrup in a small bowl. Set aside.
  2. Pour the cornmeal into a shallow, rimmed plate or pie pan and whisk in the baking powder, salt, and a few grinds of pepper. In a second similar plate or pan, whisk the egg white with the water. Pat the trout dry and dip both sides of each fillet into the egg white mixture and then the cornmeal mixture to coat.


  1. In a large sauté pan, or preferably a cast-iron skillet, cook the bacon until crisp and then set it aside on a paper towel to drain. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of bacon fat and reserve. Add 1 tablespoon of the butter to the skillet. Heat over medium-high until the fat is sizzling.
  2. Add the fish to the skillet, two fillets at a time, and fry until crisp, about 4 minutes on each side. As the fish comes hot out of the pan, scoop a little maple-sage butter onto each fillet so it melts into the hot crust. Cover the first batch loosely with foil while finishing the second batch.
  3. Add a little more bacon fat and the remaining tablespoon of butter to the pan and fry the remaining fillets along with the remaining whole sage leaves, which should take just 1 minute to crisp and can be removed while the fillets finish cooking. Serve the trout topped with the fried sage leaves and crumbled bacon.

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Lydia Turner

In Lydia’s Kitchen, Turner family chef, mother and pure maple syrup fan Lydia Turner offers a wealth of ideas for using pure Crown Maple Syrup at home. Subscribe and enjoy as Lydia shares recipes, cooking tips and more from noted chefs, her family and the Crown Maple community.

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