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Thread: Best way to clean pike ?

  1. #1
    Member Roger's Avatar
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    Default Best way to clean pike ?

    We got a cooler full of pike today what's the best way to Filet one ? I was going to pickle them ,But the wife want some fried

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    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default Fillet

    I fillet them and leave the little "Y" bones in and put them in a large ziplock each trip until I have a bag full. Then I thaw then and run them through a meat grinder two times. On the third run through the grinder I mix Italian flavored bread crumbs into the mixture until it is patty consistancy. Then I make fish patties out of them and cook them like hamburgers. The little "Y" bones are chopped up and dissolved when cooked. IT shuld work with halibut and other fish as well.
    Last edited by Daveinthebush; 02-07-2007 at 23:31. Reason: missing two d's

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  3. #3

    Default How to fillet the pike

    As much as I hate and make fun of pike and those who love pike, they are good eating I have found and I guess I'm making fun of myself. It took me a while to get descent at filleting pike. Here is an easy link on how to do it step by step:
    http://www.redrockstore.com/fillet.html
    I usually cut all the way through when removing the Y bones and end up with a narrow fillet from the top and a wide fillet on the bottom.
    We just ate the last of them yesterday, terriaki pike with fried rice. Awesome. I'll have to go kill some more next week...
    Hike faster. I hear banjo music.

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    Member skybust's Avatar
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    Where did you fish

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    Default Nasty Northern's...

    Those slime coated fish require care to cut. I first use a wide soft bristle brush to remove the outside goo for easier handling. I make certain my fillet knife is razor sharp, and then I have at them using cutting techniques demonstrated to me to produce the boneless fillets.

    The table fare quality of this fish is excellent. I rank it a close second behind walleye and perch, the two fish fish I consider to be the finest eating of any sweetwater catch.

    http://www.alaskanauthor.com

  6. #6
    Member WaterWolf's Avatar
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    Default

    I perty much clean them the same way.

    The little fellers get cut up and deep fried like halibut (bones and all) Perty much cooks the bones to crunchy crisp. At least I hadnt had a bone issue for several years doing it this way. (These little ones are fillets too)

    The big fellas I cut into fillets.

    Matter fact me and a buddy just cleaned a couple of Mid 30 inchers on Monday.
    Last edited by WaterWolf; 02-08-2007 at 05:29. Reason: Edited

  7. #7

    Default 5 fillets

    I use to fillet them like any old fish and then try to cut the Y bones out. Several years ago I found on the internet a technique that leaves you with five fillets and no bones. Do an internet search and I'm sure you'll find it. Basically you start with the pike belly down, back up. Your first fillet is taking off the back. While looking down you will see the Y bones. Your second and third fillets will be just outside of the ribcage, outside of the row of Y bones. Now, lay your pike on its side and remove the tail pieces. That will be 4 and 5. You waste some meat with this technique but the upside is no bones!

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    Default

    Alaska Fish and Game has an excellent video concerning pike fishing and filleting. Its available at the counter in most offices.

  9. #9
    Member Roger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skybust View Post
    Where did you fish

    IN A LAKE !! (SMILE)

    My buddie and I were scouting out some new areas to hunt next season and we found this lake thats maybe 3 mile across and we had the auger with us so we drilled a few holes and "BAM" pike mother load.

    Thanks to all that left a reply, The first few looked like they went thru the grinder but the others looked good.

    Well gotta run ,Going back to catch more

  10. #10

    Default clean pike

    fillet the fish and place the meat in pressure cooker. Cook for 15 minutes. All of the bones disolve.Then cool down the meat add seasoning bread crumbs and egg and you have a great fish cake. You can also take the mixture and bread it or tempura it. Or take it and mix it with surimi and stuff other fish with it. Or add the mixture with capers lemons and mayonaise and have a great dip. Enjoy, Chef Viktor

    Now drop me a private message on this lake if you do not mind!

  11. #11

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    I can't let this travesty go on any longer! My dad is the EXPERT on cleaning pike; he once traded a waterbed to an Indian who showed him where the pike were and how to clean them on a lake in Canada where we had a place (this is a true story!). Disregard the "5 piece" method as well as the video method put out by F&G; they are ridiculous.
    1. Fillet out the 2 sides of the fish
    2. Remove rib bones, leave skin on (this helps hold the meat together while you're surgically removing the Y bones)
    3. Use a very sharp, very flexible, small tip fillet knife
    4. Looking down on the fillet (like you're looking at a floor plan); skin side down, if you look closely, you'll see 2 rows of bone "tips" running lengthwise along the fillet, above where the rib cage was, towards the top or dorsal fin of the fillet.
    5. Once you see the parallel rows of bones, which peter out as you get closer to the tail, run the knive gently down onto the upper (closer to the top of the fillet) row of bones; as soon as you penetrate the meat, curve the knive towards the top of the fillet, all along the top row of the Y bones, you'll really be going at an angle towards the top of the fillet, but also progressively getting deeper into the fillet; do it all by feel, once you get the hang of it, it's almost impossible to go thru the bones. Stop just before you go all the way thru the fillet.
    6. Repeat the procedure along the lower row of bones, but you'll essentially slide the knife UNDER this lower (toward the belly) row of the Y bones, just follow the contour of the bones, use the bones as a guide to the knive and you'll waste almost no meat. You will eventually meet your previous cut (step 5) and you just pull the strip of bones out.
    7. Skin the fillet
    I didn't mean to sound too critical of the other methods, so find out what works for you; we love the above method!
    I know it sounds a little involved, but it's really simple once you see it done, plus you'll (after practice) end up with 1 whole, complete fillet.

    Recipe:
    Wash/pat/dry with paper towels the pieces of fillets for pan frying
    salt/pepper/garlic powder (not garlic salt) the pieces, toss them around in flour
    Use LOADS of butter, not oil or anything else, melt at least half a stick in the frying pan, pretty low heat, butter burns easily; it will foam a little when it's right; lay the pieces in, flip once and get them out early, too done fish sucks big time, remember. LOW HEAT! With small pike, they only need a minute or a little more or less per side to cook. As Alaskan Author stated, pike is right up there with walleyes and perch (we just ate the last of ours a few weeks ago, along with a 20 lb. box of crab legs!
    Enjoy,
    Jim
    PS---PM me with your fax # or address and I'll draw a diagram of the above procedure; it's pretty easy if you have a visual explanation.
    Last edited by Big Jim; 02-09-2007 at 01:51. Reason: Additional information

  12. #12

    Default

    Thanks to all for posting their methods. I grew up eating "mojakka", a Finnish-American soup that is based on fish and potatoes (at least the way my relatives make it.) For years I heard and believed that mojakka was the best use for this "unfilletable" fish.

    Then I got to experimenting once on a canoe trip and produced two fabulous fillets. Cooked them up and yep, they were darn close to walleye and perch. The memory of that meal has stayed with me permanently. Unfortunately, whatever filleting method I used did not! So, thanks again for the tips.

    Some of you live in places where northerns are unwelcome invaders, e.g., the Anchorage bowl and the Kenai. Can't imagine a better pastime -- catching a lean, mean fighting machine that devours trout and salmon fry, cooking him up instead of tossing him to the side, and smiling as he passes over your own piscivorous lips.

  13. #13
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    Default Pike Revenge...

    I was an absolute greenhorn to pike fishing when I first tried it in French Quebec. So was my buddy, and the two of us were in a private lake that our lodge owner sent us. He even loaned us a truck to drive our way in. Though accessible by car, we were in a pretty remote setting.

    We were using diving plugs with tandem trebble hooks. We tore 'em up. Catching pike was easy. Knowing nothing about handling them, we simply clubbed them senseless in the boat and hung them on the stringer.

    When I was handling a big one, I missed with the club, and the fish was doing the flop all over the boat with the plug still in its mouth. When I attempted to pick up the pike, it lept out of my grip and came crashing down with a trebble shank that buried its way a half inch into my left thumb.

    Alive, and shaking, it contined to stick me deeper. I was able to cut the hook from the plug with a needlenose, but as I looked at the wound and tried to remove the shank from the flesh it would not budge in either direction. Due to the depth and the slime, I knew my day was over.

    It took an hour to motor out of the lake system and make it back to the truck. The battery on the loaner truck had gone dead and it took 2 hours to walk out the trail back to the lodge. It took 3 hours to drive to the nearest city that had a hospital. It took an hour to a check in and then I had to wait another hour to see a doctor. That's 8 hours of stainless a half inch into the thumb.

    I don't speak French and the doctor didn't speak English. By the time we finished the two x-rays, three numbing shots, the forward push and snip, and then the back-out and cleansing, and the perscriptions, it was an hour more. The pharmacy was quick and then it was 3 hours back to the lodge.

    Total time of Pike Revenge was 12 hours. Add in out-of-pocket costs to have emergency services performed on you in a country with socialized medicine in which you are not a citizen and it rings in at $450.00 USD.

    I was back on the lake the next day. I learned how to handle pike and never clubbed one again. The postive image of the x-ray still hangs in my office to forever remind me what a greenhorn I truely was...

    http://www.alaskanauthor.com

  14. #14
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    Default Big Jim's got it

    The family secret Jim let slip is the best way I've seen to do pike....sometimes it is tricky to get under the y bones on the downside cut, but if you goof it up, continue on through and you essentially get a backstrap (fantastic baked or poached) and a lower fillet. But if you are chunking and deep frying....who cares. As far as their wonderful slime goes....this science fiction seeming slime happens largely when they are thawed after being kept on an icefishing trip. I usually fillet mine on the ice and leave the skin on them....then use Jim's technique at home..(bring a ziploc with you)...or I do them immediately at home before they are frozen solid....the cleanest pike experiences I have had are a slightly frozen pike....use a big knife to take each side (ribs and all) and go from there. I've got a pretty firm stomach....but a slimy, fresh thawed pike is definitely as my nephew puts it "eeeewwwwwwwhhhhhhh"

  15. #15
    Member Dan in Alaska's Avatar
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    Default

    Yup. Jim's got it. My wife's uncle is a pro at filleting and de-boning pike. He passed the "secret" on to me, but I am not nearly as proficient as he is.

    But, make no mistake.....I can eat 'em with the best of them.

  16. #16

    Default

    Yep guys, pike are underrated all over the country! When we used to go to Canada, my dad told me stories of all the fisherman that would waste them because they didn't know how to clean 'em. I can do an okay job of fillet-ing them suckers, but watching my dad do it, even 18 years after his last one, is amazing! Like watching microscopic surgery!
    I know pike are bad critters for the most part in AK, but keep and eat em!
    Good luck!
    Jim

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