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Meal Ideas

Pan-Fried Smelt with Parsley Sauce
Pan-Fried Spicy Smelt Cakes
Spinach and Smelt Casserole


Pan-Fried Smelt With Parsley Sauce

2 lbs                 907 g              Great Lakes Food frozen smelt thawed                                               
1-1/2 cups        375 ml            dried bread crumbs                                        
2 tsps                10 ml             salt                                                                    
1/2 tsp                2 ml             pepper                                                                
4 eggs
½ cup              125 ml             salad oil                                                                      

lemon wedges, parsley for garnish

Pan-Fried Smelt:  On waxed paper, combine bread crumbs, salt and pepper.  In pie plate, with fork, beat eggs with ¼ cup water.  Dip fish, one at a time, first in egg, then in bread crumbs.  Repeat, coating fish twice.  Place fish on another sheet of waxed paper.  In large skillet over medium-high heat, in hot salad oil, cook fish, a few at a time, about 2 minutes on each side until fish flakes easily when tested with fork; drain on paper towels.  Arrange fish on platter with lemon wedges, cherry tomatoes and garnish with parsley.

About 45 minutes before serving: Prepare parsley sauce and keep warm.

Makes 6 servings.

Spicy Smelt Cakes

1/2lb               250g              Cleaned, Great Lakes Food freshwater smelt
2 tbsp             30 ml              Fresh lime juice
2 tbsp             30 ml              Finely-chopped onion
2 tbsp             30 ml              Finely-chopped red pepper
3 tbsp             45 ml              Fresh-chopped dill
1/2 tsp             3 ml              Curry powder or turmeric
1/2 tsp             3 ml              Cumin
1 tsp                5 ml              Crushed chili peppers
1 tsp                5 ml               Finely-chopped garlic
1 tsp                5 ml               Finely-chopped ginger
1/4 tsp             1 ml               Sea salt
2                                          Large eggs
1 cup            250 ml               Bread crumbs (adjust to desired consistency)
1 tbsp            15 ml               Olive or vegetable oil
1 tbsp            15 ml                Butter

Place frozen smelt in a colander and run under cool running water until all the ice is removed (they should still be cold and slightly frozen in the middle). Allow to drain for about 2 minutes and pat on a paper towel to remove excess moisture.

Coarsely chop the smelt and marinate in lime juice for about 2 minutes.

Mix all remaining ingredients holding back the eggs and bread crumbs, until last.

Add approximately half the bread crumbs and 2 eggs, mixing gently. Gradually add remaining bread crumbs until desired texture is reached. Form smelt/breadcrumb mixture into about 8 balls, flatten and press into fresh bread crumbs.

Fry on medium-high heat in a pan with oil and butter until browned on each side.

Serve with teriyaki dipping sauce and/or creamy salad dressing.


Spinach and Smelt Casserole

1lb                   454 g             Great Lakes Food Frozen Dressed Lake Smelt                       
1 ½ lb              600 g              Frozen chopped spinach(2 packs)                  
2 tbsp              25 ml              Butter                                                             
¼ cup              50 ml              Diced SPANISH onion                                 
½ tsp                2 ml              Salt                                                            
Dash  Pepper

Defrost spinach. Thaw frozen smelt under a cool water spray and let drain. Bone smelt by using your thumb to lift out the backbone.

Microwave the spinach, butter, onion, salt & pepper on HIGH for 5 minutes stirring mixture half way through. Allow spinach mixture to cool and layer half on the bottom of a casserole dish. Lay boned smelt on top of spinach mixture. Layer remaining spinach on top of the smelt.  Season to taste.

Microwave on HIGH for 3 minutes. Let rest for 1 minute then microwave on HIGH for another 3 minutes. Allow casserole to rest 2 minutes before serving.


For variety, try topping with your favorite cheese sauce. Or add some crunch by sprinkling with french fried onions or crumbled potato chips.

Note: Cooking time may vary depending on Microwave model. 

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