Beer Batter Pike

Pike is my favorite fried fish, but you need to filet out the strip of Y-bones first. That's the hard part. Maybe I'll explain how I do it some time, but right now I don't have time.  

 

Each pike cleans out to 2 backstraps, 2 "under y" portions and 2 tail pieces (at least that's how I do it).  Cut the boneless chunks into "fingers" all about the same size.

 

Jackie showed me this technique for making the batter - Poke a hole in the top of a can of beer and shake it up, spray some of it into a big gallon ziplok with some regular shore lunch batter in it. 1/2 a box of shore lunch will do a pretty big meal. I don't like the corn meal styles of breading for this method.  You need to knead this batter in the bag very well. Keep adding beer or shore lunch to get the right consistency. Spraying the beer foam makes for a tempura-like batter.   Let it sit for 5 minutes, then check the consistency again.

 

Then chuck the filets in the bag and mix it all up. It helps if the filets aren't ice cold, just to keep the oil temp up. I use a cast iron pan, on the stovetop or campfire. Use plenty of oil, you almost deep-fry them.  Just make sure your oil is very hot, and fry 'em up til they are golden-brown. Honey makes an excellent dipping sauce.  Seriously, try it.  I fry up probably 40 pike a year this way, and nobody ever complains.

 

Nothing fancy, but a definite crowd-pleaser when you need to fry a big meal of fish.  Works for lots of different fish.

For frying fish over a campfire, I have a few tips.  First, make sure to have a good bed of coals from hardwood.  Break up a bunch of twigs and small sticks and keep a pile handy.  Spread the coals evenly, and put a grate of some kind over them to hold your pan.  Initially you will get enough heat from just the coals, but after a couple panfuls of fish you will need to add some sticks to flame up and get the oil hot enough.  It is a good idea to fuel the fire with sticks before dropping a new batch of fish into the oil.

 

Species Covered: 
Pike, Northern

Comments

andy's picture

Does anybody know of a good Youtube video for removing Y-bones?

IsaacsFishingCorner's picture

That recipe sounds great, I can't wait to try it! This might be a little off topic, but I think it could be awesome if we put together a "roughfish" recipe book