Huge thanks to Amy from WhatJewWannaEat for coming on the show and sharing her recipe with us!
This might put me on some people’s shit-list, but when I was in middle school there was this kid we hung out with named Brandon who was not Jewish and we were not Jewish and in fact I didn’t meet my first Jewish person until I was in my mid-20s, but at any rate: through some undoubtably hilarious circumstances I can’t recall, my friend Sarah and I nicknamed him “Gefilte Fish” one day. Truthfully, none of us had any idea what gefilte fish was actually, but we thought it sounded funny and it got Brandon’s goat and we thought that was really funny. He remained “Gefilte Fish” throughout middle school, but he still hung out with us so I he didn’t really mind all that much.
Turns out gefilte fish is actually a kind of fish-dumpling that’s an important part of the Passover Seder. I’m going to stop there because my knowledge of Judaism is pretty much what Amy told me while we shot this episode. I will say that I was pleasantly surprised by these — tender little fish dumplings with a kick-ass horseradish-sour cream sauce. Plus, her recipe uses salmon which is non-traditional, but I daresay probably more tasty. Definitely more tasty than jarred gefilte fish. DEFINITELY more attractive than jarred gefilte fish.
- For the stock:
- 1 quart fish stock (homemade or store bought)
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 celery heart, sliced
- ½ a lemon
- Salt and pepper
- For the gefilte fish:
- ¾ pound boned salmon
- ¾ pound boned whitefish (turbot, cod, pike, etc.)
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 medium onion, fine diced
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup matzo meal
- ½ cup chopped parsley
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Horseradish sauce:
- ½ cup sour cream
- ⅓ cup horseradish
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
- Salt to taste
- For the stock: Pour into a large soup pot and add 2 cups of water. Add the garlic, celery, and salt and pepper. If you are skinning your fish yourself, add the fish skin, too. Squeeze the lemon into the broth and then drop the rind in, too. Bring to a boil, then simmer while you prepare the fish balls.
- In a small pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and saute the onion until soft, or about 5 minutes. Let cool.
- Chop the fish into fine pieces and place in a bowl. Add the cooled onions, eggs, matzo meal, parsley, salt, and pepper and combine. The mixture should be firm enough to be able to form into balls. If it is too soft, add a bit more matzo meal, if it is too hard add a bit of the fish stock.
- Form 2-3 tablespoons of the fish mixture into smooth balls and set aside. You should get 12 balls.
- Add the balls to the simmering broth in a single layer and simmer until cooked through, about 10 minutes.
- Remove the gefilte fish with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel.
- To make the horseradish sauce, combine all ingredients.
- Serve gefilte fish warm or cold on a bed of lettuce with the horseradish sauce!
The LEARN TO COOK Book is Here!
By popular demand, Learn to Cook is now available in print! Over 300 pages of knowledge between two soft covers.
Learn To Cook is designed to get you cooking for yourself like a civilized human being! Drawing from a lifetime of cooking and over two years experience making instructional cooking videos, author Hilah Johnson has produced a beginners’ cookbook for today’s young adults. The casual, straightforward style will appeal to anyone with a sense of humor and the focus on fresh, simple recipes will appeal to anyone who loves to eat. The book includes chapters on menu planning, knife skills, grocery shopping and more, plus a comprehensive spice chart and over 150 recipes from breakfast to dinner to snacks in between.