Gefilte Fish


  • 3 lb fish (use pike and carp or pike and whitefish)
  • 2 lg onions, sliced
  • 2 ea eggs
  • 1/4 c matzo meal or breadcrumbs
  • 1 ts salt
  • 1/8 ts pepper (approx.)
  • 2 tb cold water (approx.)
  • 1 ea stalk celery, diced
  • 1 lg carrot, sliced
  • Cold water to cover
  • Chopped parsley


  1. Cut fish into 2-inch slices. Carefully remove flesh and bones without breaking skins. (If desired, bones may be left attached to each cut of skin.)
  2. Salt the skins and bones and place in a covered bowl in refrigerator while preparing filling.  Put the flesh and 1 onion through a food chopper, then place in a wooden chopping bowl and chop until smooth.  Add eggs, matzo meal or breadcrumbs, 1 teaspoon salt, pepper to taste, and enough cold water to make a light soft mixture.
  3. Blend thoroughly.  Wet hands with  cold water. Form oval cakes of mixture and fit them into skins.
  4. Place head bones and any other bones in the bottom of a deep heavy  kettle.  Add remaining onion, celery, carrot, and cold water to cover.
  5. Cover kettle and bring to a quick boil.  Remove cover. Reduce heat and cook at a very slow boil 1-1/2 to 2 hours.  The liquid should be reduced by half.  Allow to cool slightly before removing fish to a platter carefully so as to retain shape. Serve warm or thoroughly chilled, garnished with sliced, cooked carrot and chopped parsley.  If served cold, use the jellied sauce as a garnish.  Serve with prepared horseradish.


  1. Two slices of white bread may be substituted for matzo meal, or breadcrumbs.  Soak the bread in cold water and squeeze out. If  bread is used it may not be necessary to moisten the chopped fish mixture with cold water.  If desired, one raw carrot may be grated and added to fish miixture. (This cannot be used for Passover.)



  1. Shape the prepared fish mixture into balls.  Place the skin and bones in the bottom of kettle before adding vegetables and fish balls.



  1. Do not section the fish.  Fillet the fish, being careful not to  break skin and to leave head and tail intact.  Prepare filling as in basic recipe.
  2. Fill the whole skins with this mixture shaping to look natural.
  3. Use a deep, oval pot and place the fish on a trivet over the vegetables in the pot.  Cover with cold water and bring slowly to boiling point.  Cook at a slow boil for 1-1/2 to 2 hours.


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