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how do you fix your walleye?

Discussion in 'OGF Kitchen' started by EE, Dec 6, 2004.

  1. EE


    Hit 72nd street on Saturday, a buddy and I got pretty lucky and after making sure we were clear of anybody else's casting distance, found a section of breakwall with about 30-40 yards of empty space to cast into (fan-casting with the current). Baitfish everywhere, seagulls everywhere, knew it would be a good night......
    Between the two of us, in two hours we missed multiple hookups but landed 5 fish that were 6.8, 6.15, 7.1, 7.6, 7.14. I can't recall the last time I caught 5 fish that averaged 7 pounds! It was unbelievable. My buddy missed the biggest one of the night, had to go 10 wouldn't fit into the net and a nice wave crashing in reminded us that we don't have all the time in the world to net a fish. Unfortunately, a guy eased in to the area where I was fan casting and after about an hour and the 3rd tangle, my buddy and I called it a night.

    give me your best stuff for fixing up these walleye filets.....I love the traditional deep frier; after carefully trimming the good meat away from the dark meat and using eggs/crackers, they taste unbelieveable. problem is, I can't seem to fix them any other way without them having a residual "fishy" taste (I've tried grilling them with lemon's on top). I don't get that after-taste after deep frying them, though.
    so lets hear your best recipe for fixing up your fish (baked, grilled, etc). Do you marinate them for several hours in different things? PM me with details if you're willing to...I'm serious about trying to fix them up a new way without the residual "fishy" taste, so any ideas will be appreciated.
  2. Elamenohpee

    Elamenohpee Banned

    Like you said...cut the mud colored stuff off and then split the shoulder meat to try to make the whole fillet the same thickness. Lay it flat and take frozen spinich that has been thawed and the water sqeezed out of, spread it on the fillet evenly, then take some provalone cheese and spread a layer of that on it. Roll it up like a jelly roll and put it in a baking dish. brush or dip it in egg and then bread crumbs. Bake it for about 30 -40 mins.

    I like to fish on 2 if there is room. I'm in full brown and black gortex cammo. Say HEY! if you see me

  3. I don't seem to have a problem with the fishy taste with the fish. Believe me with my wife and kids I would know it if they were strong tasting.;) You are right that you will want to trim the dark meat away. Another thing that I do on the large fish is to split them in half longways, to where they are only half the thickness. This makes them fry up much faster. I had a couple of 10 pounders that I have been eating from and they taste very good. If you have them sliced to 1/2 to 3.4" they really only should fry for 3-4 minutes per side. The longer you fry the fish the stronger the taste is. Once it flakes apart and has white flakes it is ready to eat. As far as preparation, I really don't go for all the extra flavoring. I just dip them in egg and then flour and then fry them up.

    I hope this helps.
  4. I don't like eating walleye much over 4 or 5 pounds. I just don't like the taste. I usually roll mine in flour, dip in egg, and then use ritz or saltine crackers as breading. Beer batter is good, too.
  5. Hetfieldinn

    Hetfieldinn Staff Member

    Whenever I am going to fry walleyes that weighed over five pounds, I soak them in a bath of milk overnight. This gets rid of any "fishy" taste.
  6. Elamenohpee

    Elamenohpee Banned

    Hetfield, Is there anything you DON'T soak in milk overnight :D :D ;)
  7. The best recipe in the world, will not remove the fishy taste from those fish. You can try soaking them in buttermilk for a couple hours before you cook them. Walleyes over 18" out of Erie taste terrible to me, that is why I quit fishing it 20 years ago. Fish the inland lakes, I have cooked 3 walleyes over 29" from West Branch, and they were excellent. The best tasting Walleyes are from the inland lakes, especially Mosquito. I will get flamed for saying it, but if you like to eat Walleyes, only keep the 15 to 17" fish from Erie, or fish elsewhere. Take a picture and throw them back. I have friends that fish Erie and Mosquito, they keep Erie Walleyes to give to people who want fish, and keep the Mosquito Walleyes for themselves.
  8. Dingo


    I like to bake them after smearing them with basil pesto. Most important part is to remove the dark meat along the lateral line, as well as the belly meat. Thick filets can be split to ensure consistant cooking throughout the filet:

    basil pesto for fish --

    fresh basil leaves
    fresh parsley leaves (flat leaf, not the 'fancy' stuff that a restaurant puts next to your steak)
    a few cilantro leaves (optional)

    Use about equal amounts of basil and parsley.
    Clean the leaves and place in food processor or blender.
    Add a couple cloves (not heads) of garlic. Slice and add to the leaves. Use more if desired.
    Add grated cheese to the mix in the blender. I use parmesan cheese (best is parmigiano reggiano) and a bit of romano.
    Add a dash of black pepper (omit if pepper is added to the fish)
    Start to chop the leaves/garlic/cheese, then begin adding olive oil until the mix becomes a milkshake consistency. You don't want it too smooth.

    Smear this mixture on all sides of the fish and bake in a 350 oven. You can top it with red onion slices if desired.


    If you and "your buddy" were the ones who stayed overnight and hit the rocky on Sunday, you had the blessing of good timing on your first spot. I checked it out today, and only one fish was caught. Looks like a nice pod of big fish moved through that area yesterday while you were there.
  9. i go along with those who said to cut out the dark flesh (along the skin as well). a friend of mine showed me how to prepare the big ones a long time ago. the first thing is to cut them just in back of the gills so they bleed, then get them on ice immediately (the cold water this time of year is plenty cold enough if they're on the stringer). you won't believe how white the fillets are and it helps with that big fish taste.
    if it's a big fish i cut it into bite size pieces, dredge in flour and then fry in corn or peanut oil for no more than 2 - 2 and a half minutes. drain them on paper towels and then salt and pepper them.
    if you like a sauce on top try some chopped garlic sauteed in olive oil (maybe a quarter cup) then put in some fresh lemon juice (1 or 2 lemons) and then some chopped capers and parsley then pour it over the already fried fish. i'm telling you it's so good it hurts. people who don't even like fish freak out. i've caught walleyes from new york - minnesota and if you do it right you shouldn't get a fishy taste from these fish.

  10. captnroger

    captnroger OGF Webmaster

    Moved to Walleye talk
  11. Hetfieldinn

    Hetfieldinn Staff Member

    I would strongly disagree that Erie walleyes taste bad. I have fished Mosquito Lake for eleven years. I have caught hundreds, if not thousands of Mosquito walleyes. I also go to Quebec once or twice a year and do well on the walleyes there. Although the flesh of the walleyes from each of the three places mentioned appear different, they all taste the same. Me and my buds eat a lot of walleye, and I mean a LOT of walleye.

    Case in point: I took a bunch of walleye fillets to dear camp the night before the gun season opener. These were all walleyes that were well over five pounds. All the guys at camp are also hardcore walleye fishermen and walleye eaters. I cut the fillets into pieces about 3-4". Soak in milk overnight, tumble the pieces in a tupperwear container with lid on that is 1/3 of the way filled with Zatirans fish fry coating. Cook them in canola oil that is 360 degrees until GBD (golden brown delicious). As soon as they come out of the oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper.

    Every single person there agreed that they had never had such delicious walleye. They all said that they prepare it the same way I did, but never tried soaking the fillets in milk prior to frying.
  12. I have always heard that the milk soaking was good to take out strong taste in fish but I have yet to try it. I agree with what Hetfield said about the taste of them from Erie as opposed to Canada. We eat them every year in Canada on our trip and nobody complains. And believe me with my family they would complain if it was not good.:rolleyes:

    I think one mistake that gets made often on large fish is that they get overcooked. Any fish that is overcooked is going to become stronger tasting. When the fillets are left at the full thickness it just takes too long to cook the center of the fillet and thus the edges get stronger tasting. As I mentioned before splitting the fillet will alleviate this problem. Then you are essentially frying the equivalent to a 15-17" fish. Fillets this size really take very little time in the skillet. Once the flesh turns white it is good to go.
  13. Hook N Book

    Hook N Book The Original Hot Rod Staff Member

    You may want to try removing the skin, scales and entrails the next time you prepare your fish. :D
    Something is very wrong if your walleye has a fishy taste. IMO, Walleye is one of the mildest tasting fresh water white fish around, especially from lake Erie. Question: Do you zipper your filets to take out the Y-bones and dark strip of meat down the center? If not this could be the source of your problem. Another thing you might want to try is to soak the filets in water with a couple of tablespoons of Kosher or Sea salt. Be sure and rise thoroughly before cooking. Walleye can be subsituted in any recipe that calls for white fish. One of my favorites is a Mexican dish called "Red Snapper, Vera Cruz style" If you're interested, I can give you more info.
  14. Thanks Hook N Book!

    I was beginning to think I was the only one who found the walleyes mild and tasty.:D Aside from perch and other panfish it ranks right up at the top for taste. They are just a lot easier to clean and they feed a family a lot easier.:D
  15. Elamenohpee

    Elamenohpee Banned

    HooknBook, I'd like to see that recipe. Ever had fish tacos? Use shedded cabbage instead of lettuce and use a salsa instead of tomotos. Don't forget the lime juice :) :)
  16. Hook N Book

    Hook N Book The Original Hot Rod Staff Member

    I'll PM you with the formula! :D
  17. I LOVE fish Taco's! I usually use Tuna though used Mahi before and is pretty much the same as the tuna, but nothing beats the Tuna in my mind although I am sure Halibut would be pretty good too. Have you done it before with walleye's? I have a few fillets in the freezer and just wouldnt think they were the right consistency to do that with. But I am quite curiuos now.....

    If ya want my recipe for Tuna Taco's give me a PM
    Fast, not that exspensive, incredibly tasty and healthy too!
  18. EE


    awesome ideas, I'll give each a try to see if they work better for me. some of these recipes are making my stomach grumble.............

    fixed up some of those Saturday night Walleyes on Monday and they were outstanding. Deep fryer as usual was great, but I also grilled a big slab without any foil underneath (I normally use foil), it tasted much better than the last time I grilled it. I probably cleaned these better and also not using foil seems to have worked.

    Dingo, you got it - we stayed Saturday night and had a great day on the Rocky Sunday, nothing under 26" and each of us had one pushing 30". was a great weekend, what a fishery Cleveland has in it's own back yard (we caught not one small fish all weekend).

    keep those recipes coming - somebody could make a mint putting a recipe book together for Walleye (sure it's been done before)......

    Elamenohpee, I'll drop you a P.M. next time I'm headed up, if you're in the area I'll look around

  19. Hook N Book

    Hook N Book The Original Hot Rod Staff Member

    Okay here it is.

    Red Snapper VeraCruz Style:
    (can subsitute any white fish (Walleye too)).

    2 tbls. olive oil
    1 medium-size onion, chopped
    3 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
    1 lb. tomatoes, peeled and chopped
    10 pitted green olives, chopped
    2 tbls. capers
    3 bay leaves
    6 black pepper corns
    salt to taste
    2 pounds red snapper fillets

    Heat oil in a large saucepan. Add onion and garlic, and cook 5-10 minutes until soft but not brown. Add tomatoes and salt. Bring to a boil, Add olives, pepper corns, bay leaves and capers. then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes.

    Place fish into a large skillet and sprinke with salt. pour tomato mixture over fish. bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer about 7 minutes or until fish turns from translucent to opaque. Discard bay leaves. Garnish with fresh cilantro.
  20. Ichabod

    Ichabod Ghost

    You forgot...throw the olives, caper and pepper corns at your cat to keep it away fom the stove :D :D

    Sounds good, I'll try it