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Smelt Recipes

Pickled Smelt

2 pounds cleaned smelt
3 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
2 bay leaves
1 cup onion, sliced
1 cup white vinegar

Cook fish in water, salt, pepper and bay leaves and onion in a covered pan for 12 minutes. Drain and measure fish stock. There should be 2 cups. Add the vinegar and bring to a boil. Cook 5 minutes and cool in refrigerator at 40 to 45F. Pour over fish, let stand in refrigerator for several hours. Serves 4 to 6.


Beer Batter For Smelt

( Flavor is improved by use of milk in their preparation before cooking. Soak 5-6-in. fish in milk for 1/2 hour before frying. )

1 Tbsp. dried oregano
1 Tbsp. seasoned salt
1 tsp. seasoned pepper
1 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. paprika
1 cup flour
1/2 cup lemon juice
Beer--enough to thin batter to the consistency of pancake batter.
Mix all ingredients. Flour fish before dipping in batter. As batter is used, add more beer to maintain consistency .
Note: This batter may also be used for other fish, onion rings or chicken.


Title: Deviled Smelt

Categories: Appetizers
Yield: 4 servings

12 oz Smelt, thawed if frozen
1/4 c All-purpose flour
1/4 ts Salt
1 ts Dry mustard
1/4 ts Cayenne pepper
1/2 ts Paprika
1 Finely grated lemon peel
Vegetable oil for frying
2 tb Chopped fresh parsley
Lemon wedges
Lemon peel strips (opt)
Fresh dill sprig (opt)
Rinse smelt under cold running water. Pat dry on paper towels.

In a plastic bag, combine flour, salt, mustard, cayenne pepper, paprika and lemon peel. Add smelt and shake well until fish are evenly coated. Half fill a deep-fat fryer or saucepan with oil; heat to 375'F. (190'C.) or until a 1/2" cube of day-old bread browns in 40 seconds. Place 1/2 of smelt in a frying basket. Lower basket gradually into hot oil and fry 1 minute, shaking basket frequently. Drain on paper towels. Reheat oil to 375'F. (190'C.). Repeat with remaining smelt. Place all of smelt into basket and fry 1-2 minutes more or until lightly golden and crisp. Drain on paper towels. Turn into a warm serving dish, sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve hot with lemon wedges. Garnish with lemon peel strips and dill sprigs, if desired.


French Fried Smelt (Candy Fish)

Helen Kilmer, Sarasota, Florida


1 lb. smelt (fish)
lemon juice (enough to cover fish)
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. salad oil

Clean and wash fish.
Soak in lemon juice 10 to 15 minutes.
Beat until foamy 1 egg.
Add milk, salt, flour, and salad oil. Continue beating until smooth.
Dip fish into batter and drop into hot fat 370 degrees.
Brown on one side, turn, brown on other side. Lift out of hot fat and drain on paper towels.
Serve with any good seafood sauce.
This amount of batter is enough to cover about 1 pound of smelt.