There are two fish camps when it comes to Pesach, those that insist on serving gefilte fish and those that well, wouldn’t serve it if it were the last food on earth and Moshe was coming to the Seder. I live in the “you can’t eat enough of it” world … my husband, not so much. He lives in a world where the only good gefilte fish is the one that remains on someone else’s plate
To compromise I have had to come up with a few really interesting fish dishes that can be used as an appetizer at the Seder or as a light lunch with a salad during chol chomde.
MUFFIN TIN WHITE FISH CAKES (fish/pareve)
You can make these up to 2 days before you need them. Cover them with plastic wrap and refrigerate them, don’t freeze them. Good hot or cold.
1 pound smoked white fish, de-boned and flaked
2 cups matzo meal
1/2 red bell pepper, minced
4 green onions, sliced
1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 large eggs
1 to 2 teaspoons ground white horseradish
1 stalk celery, diced fine
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
lemon wedges, for garnish
Preheat oven to 450ª. Generously coat a 12-cup nonstick muffin pan with oil. In a bowl combine the white fish, matzo meal, bell pepper, green onions, mayonnaise, eggs, horseradish, salt and pepper and mix until combined. Divide the mixture evenly among muffin cups. Bake until crispy and cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve with lemon wedges. Makes 12
SALMON AND WHITEFISH BITES WITH CUCUMBER SAUCE (fish/pareve)
1 cup finely chopped peeled and seeded cucumber
3/4 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons prepared white horseradish
2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
1 tablespoon finely chopped green onions
3 tablespoons olive oil plus more for frying fish cakes
3 medium carrots, peeled, finely chopped
1 2/3 cups finely chopped onions or leeks
2 large eggs
6 tablespoons matzo meal
1 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon ground pepper
18 ounces skinless whitefish fillets, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 9-ounce skinless salmon fillet, cut into 1-inch cubes
Lemon wedges and parsley to decorate
For sauce: In a bowl combine the cucumber, mayonnaise, horseradish, parsley, and green onions. Mix to combine and season with salt and pepper. Sauce can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.
For fish cakes: Line a cookie sheet with plastic wrap and set it aside. Place the fish pieces in a food processor and pulse until they are almost a paste but there are still some pieces left. Set the mixture aside. In a skillet saute the carrots and onions in the 3 tablespoons of olive oil until they are just soft but not browned. Let them cool in the skillet. In a bowl beat the eggs to combine and then add the matzo meal, salt, and pepper and mix to combine. Add the cooked vegetable mixture to the egg mixture and mix to combine. Add the fish mixture and mix to combine. Stir fish into matzo meal mixture and mix to combine. Using wet hands and about 1/3 cup for each cake/ patty, shape fish mixture into sixteen 1/2-inch-thick cake/patties. Arrange on prepared baking sheet. This can be done 2 days ahead of when you want to serve it. Cover with plastic and refrigerate.
Add enough oil to a large skillet to coat bottom. Heat oil and cook in batches. Cook over a medium heat until both sides are golden and the patty is cooked through about 3 minutes per side. You can make these ahead of time and rewarm in the oven or serve cold. Garnish with lemons and parsley and serve the sauce on the side. Makes 16.
Modified from Bon Appétit April 2008
ORANGE SALMON PATE (fish/pareve or dairy)
A great alternative to chopped liver!
1 cup dry white wine
2/3 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon zest
3 tablespoons honey
1 lb. salmon fillets
4 oz. smoked salmon, finely chopped
1 tablespoon minced onion
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
4 tablespoons margarine or butter, softened
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 teaspoons lemon juice
Salt and pepper
In a skillet combine the wine, orange juice and honey; Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Salt and pepper the salmon filet and then place it in the skillet in the simmering liquid. Cover the skillet and poach salmon for 6 to 10 minutes depending on the thickness of the salmon, it should be firm to the touch and flake easily when pulled with a fork. Do not overcook. Remove the salmon from the skillet and let it cool on a plate. Remove the skin if there is any. When the salmon is cool place it in a bowl, flake it and add the smoked salmon, onion, dill, parsley, margarine, mayonnaise and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. Great on matzo or matzo rolls. Serves 10 to 12.