Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Cooking Questions, Just Ask

On one of the food lists someone asked:

my gefilte fish fell apart

It's too late for me to try again for the seder, so either we'll eat crumbly gefilte fish or we'll just skip it all together, but I want it to stick together next time. So what makes gefilte fish fall apart in the pot? I had only ONE ball -- that's it -- the rest was just pieces of ground fish floating in broth.

I used one fish -- about 2 or 3 pounds and there were 3 eggs and 75 grams of matzoh meal in the mix -- shouldn't that be enough to hold it together?

My reply:
re:my gefilte fish fell apart

A few things:

Didn't you use any onions, grated, blenderized, food processed? I would have at least one.

Second, I don't measure/weigh the matzah meal. I mix in until it's not watery. The fish is never of uniform water content, so it's not a good idea to trust recipes. Use your own judgement.

I let it sit for a while after mixing. The stock must be boiling very hard. Lower the flame only after the fish mush balls are in.

Generally you can see if the balls will stay solid immediately as you drop them in, so if one falls apart, stop immediately and add more matzah meal.
If you have any other cooking questions, please ask, and I'll do my best to answer.  Click here for my very simple gefilte fish recipe.  The same basic simple recipe is good for all different types of fish.  For something extra special and no extra work, try "Italian Gefilte Fish."  Instead of classic onions, carrots, salt, sugar and pepper in the water, boil the fish balls in slightly diluted tomato sauce.

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