Not being Jewish; I was curious what a gefilte fish was, having herd many jokes about gefilte fish on TV and in the movies. I looked up gefilte fish on the net and found out it was not a kind of fish but a fish recipe, that could be described as minced freshwater bone fish dumplings cooked in fish head soup. Kosher gefilte fish is made with matzo meal not bread crumbs and served cold with horseradish on holidays. I finally get the gefilte fish jokes, like a lot of people I don’t like fish soup of any kind other than clam chowder and clams are shellfish.
It’s not the bone fish; I eat bone fish like carp, pike, sucker, or whitefish all the time, it’s the cooked in fish soup part I don’t like. Luckily not everyone makes gefilte fish the same way and I found hundreds of recipes I could peruse and customize to my tastes.
Some people make there gefilte fish out of trout, salmon, bass, even salt water fish like haddock or cod and they steam, poach, bake, and even fry gefilte fish, so I had a lot to choose from and I made it a couple times trying a couple different ingredients.
This is my fried gefilte fish recipe it is made mostly with the usual ingredients with my personal touch to make it different. It is good hot or cold, with tartar sauce or horseradish, my oldest boy can’t get enough of it when I cook it. He likes the fact the small bones in the pike are ground up too small to find or taste.
Step 1: Ingredients.
- 2.2 pounds or 1kg of pike filets.
- Soy sauce.
- Worcestershire sauce.
- Liquid Smoke (Hickory Flavor).
- Black pepper.
- Celery salt.
- Garlic or Garlic Powder.
- 1 large onion, about two cups diced.
- 2 to 3 good size carrots, about 4 cups shredded.
- 4 large eggs.
- ½ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil or corn oil.
- 1.1 pounds or 1/2kg bread crumbs or matzo meal.
- Horseradish or Tartar sauce.
- Baby Carrots.
- Rousses Potatoes.
- Dorees Potatoes.
- Cooking Onions.
- 1 liter of water or chicken broth.
Step 2: Fish Preparation.
I do this by soaking the filets in a shallow dish with:
- 1oz of Soy sauce
- 1oz of Worcestershire sauce
- 1oz of Liquid Smoke (Hickory Flavor)
- Black pepper
- Fresh crushed Garlic or Garlic Powder
Step 3: Sides.
While I wait for the Pike to marinate I make my side dishes, today I am having baby carrots & potatoes. I place the Baby carrots, Rousses potatoes, and Dorees potatoes, in a roasting pan. Sprinkle diced tomatoes and onions on top with Black pepper, Celery salt, crushed Garlic or Garlic powder, and fresh diced Parsley or Parsley flakes. Add 1 liter of water or chicken broth to the roasting pan, cover and bake at 350 degrees for two hours.
If you want to steam or poach your Gefilte Fish place your fish balls or dumplings on top of the sides after the sides have been cooking for one hour, by the time the sides are finished cooking, so are your Gefilte Fish.
Step 4: Peeling and Dicing Garlic.
- I take the cloves of garlic and place them on my cutting board.
- I take my big heavy curved meat cleaver and smack the cloves of garlic with the side of the cleaver.
- The garlic skins literally fall off.
- Then I rock the sharp curved edge of my meat cleaver over the garlic until it is diced the size I want.
Step 5: Preparing the Fish Balls or Dumplings.
- Dice 1 large onion and place in bowl, about two cups.
- Grate 2 to 3 good size carrots and place in bowl, about 4 cups.
- Dice the Pike filets that have been marinating for 20 minutes and place in bowl.
- Dice Garlic and place in bowl.
- Add black pepper Parsley.
- Mix everything together and grind.
- Add 4 large eggs.
- Add ½ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil or corn oil.
- Add 1.1 pounds or 1/2kg bread crumbs or matzo meal.
- Mix thoroughly.
- Roll into balls or dumplings and place on wax paper.
- Leave in fridge until ready to cook.
I mix the ingredients of all spiced meats before grinding to ensure a through mix of the spices in the meat when it is ground in the grinder. I also cover the end of the meat grinder with a plate to prevent the grinder from spitting ingredients all over my kitchen.
Step 6: Frying the Gefilte Fish.
- Fill a pan with oil for frying, about ¾ of an inch deep.
- Heat on medium, it is hot enough when a sprinkling of matzo meal or bread crumbs sizzles in the oil.
- With a spoon add as many patties to the oil as will fit without crowding the pan.
- Fry for 2 minutes on each side, at which point patties should be crisp and golden brown.
- Check that the fish is cooked all the way through. If not cooked through, continue cooking on lower heat.
- Serve hot or cold with tartar sauce or horseradish.
Always put frying pan handles into stove to avoid accidents.
Step 7: The Gefilte Fish Is Served.
Whether you have your gefilte fish, fried, baked, poached, steamed, spicy, or sweet, depends on what part of Europe your recipe is from, however for kosher gefilte fish use matzo meal not bread crumbs. I made my gefilte fish spicy because my wife and son are diabetics and we don’t cook with sugar and I fried my gefilte fish because I don’t like fish soup of any kind except clam chowder. This gives me an idea though gefilte fish cooked in clam chowder.