Gefilte Fish

Gefilte Fish


  • Very large pot (or metal roasting pan) with cover


Fish stock

  • 1 pound fish bones, skins, and heads
  • 1 tsp coarse kosher salt
  • 1 onion, sliced into rounds
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into rounds
  • 2 stalks celery, cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 1 head garlic
  • 1 tsp herbs de provence

Fish mix

  • 5 pounds Minnesota Gefilte fish mix (mix of ground fish, including walleye) (from Coastal Seafoods)
  • 2 onions, cut into chunks
  • 1 carrot, cut into chunks
  • 1 small parsnip, cut into chunks (optional)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tsp coarse kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup seltzer water, cold
  • 1/3 cup matzah meal (approx.)


Prepare fish stock

  • Place fish bones, skins, heads, sliced onion, celery, garlic, spices, and 2 tsp salt into pot.
  • Add water to cover.
  • Bring to boil.
  • Simmer 20 minutes.
  • Remove foam that accumulates.

Prepare fish mix

  • Place gefilte fish mix in large bowl.
  • In food processor fitted with steel blade, finely chop 2 onions, carrot, and parsnip.
  • Add chopped vegetables to fish.
  • Add eggs, one at a time, 1 tsp salt, and seltzer water, and mix thoroughly.
  • Stir in enough matzah meal to make a light soft mixture.

Shape patties

  • Form 1/3-cup portions of mixture into oval patties approx. 3 inches long.

Cook patties

  • Remove from saucepan the bones, etc., and return stock to simmer.
  • Gently place fish patties in simmering fish stock.
  • Cover loosely and simmer for 20-30 minutes, shaking pot periodically so patties don't stick.
  • When patties are cooked, remove from water and allow to cool at least 15 minutes.
  • Using slotted spoon, remove patties. If serving, arrange on platter, strain some of stock over fish, and save remaining stock. If serving later, place patties in container, cover with stock, and store in refrigerator.


Adapted from Jewish Cooking in America, by Joan Nathan.