How to Cook a Fresh Pike

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The Northern pike, or pike, is a culinary catch despite its bad reputation. Pike are notoriously bony, each fillet filled with intricate bones that can be tricky to remove. Deep-frying softens bones, making them edible, and is a good way for a novice to prepare pike. If you or someone you know is adept at filleting pike, this firm-fleshed fish is prime for grilling.

Deep-Fried Pike

Step 1

Rinse fresh pike fillets under cold running water. Soak the fillets in milk, completely submerging them. Add a tablespoon of salt for every cup of milk used. Soak for at least 2 hours.

Step 2

Remove the pike fillets from the milk and pat dry with paper towels. Bring an electric deep fryer or a pot filled with enough oil to cover the pike fillets to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 3

Add a generous dusting of flour to a plate and add pinches of desired seasonings such as salt and pepper. Combine. Create an egg wash to help the coating stick by whisking together 3 eggs and a cup of milk. Dredge the pike fillets into the egg wash, then through the flour mixture, shaking any excess flour loose.

Step 4

When the oil is hot enough, carefully add the coated pike fillet. Cook until the coating turns golden brown and crispy. Remove the pike fillet and let drain on a rack over paper towels to keep the coating crispy. Repeat this process for the remaining fillets. Serve with wedges of fresh lemon.

Grilled Northern Pike

Step 1

Preheat your grill to a medium-high heat. Grease the grill grates with olive oil to prevent the fish from sticking.

Step 2

Rinse fresh pike fillets under cold running water and pat dry with paper towels. Massage a drizzle of olive oil into the fillet and sprinkle with desired seasonings such as a subtle lemon-pepper mix or a bolder garlic and Cajun seasoning.

Step 3

Place the pike fillets on the grill. Cook for eight to 10 minutes per inch of thickness, four to five minutes per half inch, carefully flipping once with a thin metal spatula.

Step 4

Remove the pike fillets from the grill and serve with lemon wedges and homemade tartar sauce.

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