Jewish food isn’t famous for being paleo, so let’s fix that with The New Yiddish Kitchen, a collection of recipes from…not exactly Bubbe’s kitchen. Cooks, writers and bloggers Jennifer Robins and Simone Miller teamed up to slim down some of these beloved dishes for the modern Stone Age.
If there were ever a food that was completely polarizing, it would be gefilte fish. People either love it or hate it, the latter often being those who haven’t tried it until they were adults. The good news: Making it with fresh salmon and whitefish yields a gefilte fish that is nothing like the kind you’re picturing submerged in a jar of fish jelly.
Note: If you don’t have a meat grinder, ask your fishmonger to grind the fish for you.
Bubbe’s tip: What, it’s too much work for you? In my day, the recipe started with “catch a fish,” so quit your kvetching!
- 2 pounds fish heads, bones and skin
- 1 medium onion, peeled and sliced
- 2 large carrots, roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon coconut palm sugar (optional)
- 2 teaspoons salt
- cold water, just enough to cover the bones
- 4 medium carrots
- 1 small parsnip
- 1 small onion
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup potato starch
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 pounds salmon, ground (see note)
- 1 1/2 pounds mild white fish, such as cod, pike or carp, ground
For the fish stock
Place the fish bones, sliced onion, roughly chopped carrots, apple cider vinegar, coconut palm sugar and salt in a medium stockpot. Add cold water to cover and bring to a boil.
Allow the stock to simmer for 50-60 minutes, until the vegetables are very soft. Strain the stock and discard the vegetables and bones. Place the stock in a large, deep sauté pan and set aside.
For the fish
Grate 2 of the carrots and the parsnip. If you are using a food processor to do this, you may need to switch to the chopping blade after shredding, so the vegetables get very finely minced.
Grate the onion and squeeze out the excess liquid.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, potato starch and salt. Mix in the grated vegetables. Add the fish and mix with your hands until well combined. Form the fish mixture into oval patties about 1⁄4 cup (55 grams) each.
Peel and slice the remaining carrots.
Bring the stock back up to a simmer and add the fish patties and sliced carrots. Simmer for 10 minutes, flip the fish and simmer another 5 minutes. Chill the stock, fish and carrots for at least 1 hour, or until very cold. Serve the fish cold with the sliced carrots and a little of the stock, if desired.