Jo Freeman, a great friend of Rabbi Sylvia Rothschild, has sent us this special recipe for gefilte fish. Jo writes, “I agree with Rabbi Lionel Blue who says that the Jewish year is marked by smell and taste. I would add ‘life’. Every day my love is shown to family and friends through food! We do have to watch our waistlines so chopped liver is a rare treat but the chicken soup & kneidlach comes into its own to cure all ills…..”
My Aunt Molvyn was a wonderful cook and from an early age in the 1950’s encouraged me into her tiny scullery to ‘help’ her cook. The actual kitchen was in the cellar and the dirty utensils were put in a dumb waiter and sent downstairs to be washed up by the maid!!! Not very hygienic…
All measurements are approximate
1 kilo frozen pollock or any other white fish ( no Bones)
1 onion peeled
2 cups medium matzo meal enough to bind the mixture together
1 cup sugar
Salt & black pepper to taste
Sunfower oil for frying
This mixture can also be used for boiled gefilte fish if so for this you will need for the stock:
1 onion peeled
1 stick of celery
A few whole black peppercorns
Half a litre of water
Fried Gefilte Fish using a Food Processor
Thaw the fish if frozen.
Put the peeled onion in the processor & chop finely. Leave in the bowl and add the fish.
Put the chopped mixture in a bowl add the eggs. Add the matzo meal and the sugar, salt and pepper and mix to a reasonably stiff consistency. Add more matzo meal if necessary.
Wet your hands and form the mixture into medium size balls.
NB at this stage the balls can be divided if you are going to make boiled and fried.
For the fried fish, heat the oil in a pan or deep fat fryer (needs to be very hot; be careful) and add the fish balls in batches of about six at a time frying for 4 minutes ’til golden brown.
Drain and put on kitchen roll to soak up excess oil.
Transfer to a lined baking tray and put in a warm oven 100c for 10 mins.
These can be served hot or cold.
For the boiled fish
Peel and cut the carrot into thin slices and roughly chop the onion and the celery.
Put the above into a large pan and cover with water and a teaspoon of sugar and the peppercorns.
Bring this to the boil and simmer ’til the vegetables are soft.
Then gently add the raw fish balls not too tightly depending on the size of the pan and simmer for 5 mins VERY GENTLY or the fish will break up.
When the fish is cooked, remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and place in a large shallow dish.
Bring the stock to the boil and reduce the liquid by about a half.
Let the stock cool then pour through a sieve.
Pour the strained liquid over the boiled fish and decorate each fish ball with a piece of the carrot. Allow this to cool completely before serving.
A kilo of fish makes about 30 medium balls enough for a Yom Tov dinner.
Both the fried and boiled fish balls freeze very well.
It is an easy dish to make and quantities are easily adapted.
Recipe shared by Jo Freeman