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Winter Trekking Ice Fishing => Winter Trekking Ice Fishing => : Hutchy December 26, 2012, 11:01:43 AM

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: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy December 26, 2012, 11:01:43 AM
Hello all,

 I find there is a bit of a trend towards people not liking to eat pike. Some say that is tastes fishy, stinky, etc. And all those bones!

I would actually rather have a pike than anything else, and have had only one that I can remember that tasted a bit more fishy than some and that was an nine pounder in late august I believe. Was still good, but had a slight fish taste to it. (it is fish, strange enough). I usually keep them in the three to six pound range and would take a six pound pike over a six pound walleye. I find that peoples aversion to them has to do with the bones. I grew up next door to a fishing and hunting guide who in 20 years of living here never bought meat. I learned quickly that cleaning pike boneless, and soaking it (and all wild meat) in salt water prior to eating makes all the difference and ehances the enjoyment of it. A pike fillet, and some cajun fish crisp cooked on the ice? Red lobster can keep its all you can eat shrimp.

My question is this: How many people fillet it boneless and is there an interest in a video on how to fillet it boneless?


I have heard there is another method different from how I do it, but I waste little meat, so I feel it works.
The ice is about thick enough now, and as soon as I can get all these christmas functions out of the way I could catch a few and do a video. I have not posted vids before, but it will be an adventure.  ;D

Lemme know.

Hutch



: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: brianw December 26, 2012, 11:26:39 AM
Greetings Hutch

I would certainly be interested to see how one cleans a pike so it comes out boneless.

Cheers

Brian
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Slush Walker December 26, 2012, 11:47:59 AM
I'd like to see a video as well.

-SW
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy December 26, 2012, 11:54:03 AM
Two is enough!  ;D

Cant promise a timeline, but I will put it on the to do list. for the next two weeks or so. Fifteen below last night, so ice is forming fast.

Hutch
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: ravinerat December 26, 2012, 11:56:33 AM
I'm usless at filleting Pike but my buddy has the magic hands. No waste with him either. There is a youtube video somewhere I saw onece. Sure be interested to learn though if you want to put one together. I don't usually target pike but say I am going to every year. The laker, Whitie get boaring after awhile. Target Walleye once in awhile during ice but it is more of a travel for me.


RR
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Slush Walker December 26, 2012, 11:59:27 AM
Hutchy - Looks like you will be forced to go fishing now!
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy December 26, 2012, 12:12:37 PM

Lakers and whiteys getting boring... Well, the open Bay is about a twelve mile sled ride from here and no one for some reason fishes whitefish. Lakers yes, but it is often easier to just atv out a half mile from my place and catch some pike instead of going for the big ride. I guess I am just lazy...

Darn, forced to fish...

you guys can back me up on this one right?

Hutch
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Ted December 26, 2012, 03:09:16 PM
I grew up picking the third set of bones out of pike and still doing it.
I'd love to see a video as I'll be eating pike for most of July and August.
Ted
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: buddhabelly December 26, 2012, 03:32:45 PM
Pike is good eating and I'm kinda glad it's not on everyone's radar and in fact some consider it a nuisance fish so it leaves more for me lol.

There are lots of videos on Youtube so not sure if you'll want to go through the hassle of videoing it ;)

I start my fillet along the backbone to the tail, that's one fillet. Then run the tip of the knife (Rapala) along the spine (from where you just removed the top piece) just above the Y-bones (listening for the tell tale soft click of knife on bone) on either side before cutting away the side fillets. Then there's a small fillets near the tail on both sides after removing the sides so 5 pieces altogether.

I hope to get onto hard water this year for ice pike and perch.
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: massbigbore442001 December 26, 2012, 09:47:25 PM
Here is a thought.

Lately I have been buying pickled herring from a Polish food store. I really love the stuff and the pickling process dissolves the bones more or less.

I have heard one can pickle pike and pickerel just as easy. That might be an option.
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy December 27, 2012, 10:15:10 AM
pickling sounds cool. Ever had canned salmon? I dont know what the process is, but the backbone pieces are in it and they crumble and dissolve if you eat it right out of the can. I believe, if I am not mistaken, pickling pulls the calcium out of the bones. If you place an egg in the shell in vinegar the shell becomes flexible and the egg will bounce.

I watched a few of the you tube methods and saw one way similar to how I do it, and one way very different. I may still do a vid because it seemed that how I am used to do it saves just a bit more meat than the you tube methods. Either way, how the you tube guys do it seem to work.
 I would post a link, but I think most here know how to use the you tube search feature?

May still do a vid.


Hutch
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: buddhabelly December 27, 2012, 10:31:49 AM
cool , let us know when it's up. always looking for new ways to do things
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Kaifus December 29, 2012, 12:31:20 AM
In the past couple years I've finally been catching enough Northern to try pickling and I've come to really enjoy it.  I've always enjoyed pickled Herring but the pickled Pike is almost as good and allows me to add the right amount of onions.  Also one small Northern make one quart of pickled fish and one jar lasts me for weeks and keeps for months.  That said, hopefully I'll be catching fish and some Northern on winter camping trips and they will be destined for the fry pan and not the pickle jar so I would be interested in how to de-bone them proper. Filleting out fish takes me awhile and I can't see how my fingers won't be absolutely frozen before I'm done.
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy December 30, 2012, 01:35:58 AM
had a pike to the hole crappie fishin today...hook popped out before I even got a good look at him. Anyway, I am quite interested to try pickling it. I have never pickled anything before. What is your method Kaifus? and others, of course.

Hutch

: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Kaifus December 30, 2012, 09:33:07 AM
Here's the recipe that I use.  I like it because unlike other recipes I saw that calls for a certain amount of fish, this one you just start filling up jars and then add the salt so its pretty easy.  I think when I've made it I've started with two jars of fish and salt but after day five and the adding of the onions I would then have three jars.  The first time I made it I left it sit for six or seven days in the salt and I think it was tougher then so wash off the salt on day five.  I've read that smaller Pike, say under 24" are better for pickling which makes since. During the first five day when I shake it I would always leave the jar upside-down from what it had been.  I use white onions and there as good as the fish when pickled.  I've never used red pepper. Good luck.

(http://i153.photobucket.com/albums/s215/bootstraps1/IMG_0538-4.png)
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy December 30, 2012, 10:27:37 AM
Wow, thanks for that. Am definitely trying that this year. Seems pretty straight forward.

Hutch
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Aarona December 31, 2012, 10:58:27 AM
I love N pike fried, steamed/ boiled and dipped in butter, or pickled. If you are getting smaller fish (under 24") I think the best cleaning method is to take the top piece, then the tail sections, then down the sides of the Y-bones and ribs method. If they are bigger you can do the regular fillet method and remove the Y bones after. I guess it shows that I get lots of little ones because I don't know how to do that second method very well but am great at doing the first method and it's easy to learn.

My pickling variation is that I do a soak in a vinegar/salty brine until the chunks of fish are white/ cooked looking (agreed that too long a soak makes them tougher). Then rinse them off good. I then put my pickling spice and vinegar and sugar in a pan and heat it until it gets warm but not boiling and the sugar dissolves. I then let it cool and set my fish and onion layers into your vessel of choice for the fish and then pour the strained liquid (gets out the pickling spice stuff) over the fish and onion to top of the vessels. Let er sit a few more days and enjoy. I've done this with smelt, N pike, tulibees, red horse, and suckers. I would advise taking out the rib bones since it's so easy with all fish; the pin bones and other bones will get dissolved. 
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy January 01, 2013, 12:56:42 AM
Pickled smelt. Now that seems like a great idea! One can only eat so many cajun fried smelt before thinking there must be something else to do with them. Many in freezer still... I bet it makes the backbones dissolve well, no?

Hutch
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Aarona January 03, 2013, 08:58:55 AM
No, you've got to fillet the smelt out carefully- just kidding! Yes, the bones get soft enough to not notice. Same prep style on the smelt (chop head and clean cavity). I cut them in half so they are a one bite per chunk, but they can be left whole too. Try it you'll like it, healthy way to gobble more smelt. We've done bluegills too if they are coming easy through the ice.
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy January 03, 2013, 10:30:56 AM
Can someone reccommend a tiny fillet knife for the smelt? Something with about say, a two inch blade?  ;D

Hutch

: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Foxfire January 07, 2013, 12:06:29 AM
http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=KM3wAgBmeNU&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DKM3wAgBmeNU

There a bunch on YouTube on the OP. my bro has done it and it truly work's. He really likes northern's now.
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: HOOP January 07, 2013, 12:39:14 AM
Excellent!   That's the pattern I do it, but that expert was WAYYYYY more efficient and precise than I am.  He did that in about 1/4 the time I do.  Time for me to practice! 

I think it is true that pike tastes better than walleye.   I know, I know, sacrilege.   :o    But feed on some nice ice fishing pike and its hard to deny - they are really good.  I don't bread them.  Just sprinkle with Tex-Mex spice and fry in olive oil - good eating!
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: kgd January 08, 2013, 11:55:46 AM
I prefer pike.  My wife and I went to a fly-in fishing outpost one year where we had access to 3 different lakes for fishing.  One was full of walleye - which is what attracted us to that particular out-post site.  The other two lakes were really productive for pike and made for really enjoyable and easy access fishing.  I remember lugging a small outboard over to the walleye lake the first night and we caught 3 walleye the next morning.  During the afternoon that first day, we hung around the much more productive pike lake and decided to take a fish to compare the two of them side by side.  I have enjoyed pike most of my life but my wife was conditioned to think of it as a poor fish. I remember we both preferred the pike to walleye by a long shot.  We loved the greater firmness of the flesh.  We used the five fillet method.  I didn't quite get all the bones out of the side fillets, but I was careful to feed my wife the parts of the top piece and tail pieces so she wouldn't get any bones at all.    Anyhow, bones don't really bother me and sometimes I think its good if I have something to slow me down while eating fish :)  After our taste test, I went back to the walleye lake only to retrieve the motor.  We spent the rest of our week at the output fishing and enjoying the pike!

As to the OP - by all means make a video on your fillet technique.  Making videos are a lot of fun and creative exercises.  Plus, there is never any one definitive video out there showing everything that needs to be shown.  Watching more videos gives us viewers different perspectives and ideas.  For a video on filleting fish, this is one case where having somebody film you is a definite plus. 

Having watched (and favorited) the link provided by Foxfire, I'd say there is room for improvement on the instructional.  A couple of critiques on that video are provided so that if somebody were to make another video on the topic they might consider them.  The linked video was better at showing the proficiency of the person than it was at instructing the process.  It was a bit too fast in its execution.  The person filming also had a tendency to zoom in and out during the process trying to catch the action.  It would have been more effect (from an instructional point of view) if the person filming would ask the person doing the filleting to stop at different points to allow the person filming to re-set up the camera and then continue on.  I think on an instructional such as this it is worth while to combine still shots with video.  For example, strategically capturing the initial placement of the fillet knife prior to the cut can be captured with a still shot more effectively and held on the video for about 5 or 6 seconds with some voice-over work to talk about what land marks on the fish are used to position the knife. 

Looking forward to the video that you make! 
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy January 08, 2013, 04:20:41 PM
Cool. I am in school in sudbury now. But I have three day weekends. This weekend I will try to catch some pike. Never posted a video, but the challenge seems cool. I will be using the gfs I phone, so we will see how it goes. The pic quality is great, I cant see how a vid would be any different

Hutch
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: low-1 January 18, 2013, 10:12:14 AM
Smoked jackfish is also VERY tasty.  I'm not sure which method you use to de-bone them, the 3-piece method or whatever is probably the most efficient.  We have so many up here, I'm really not concerned about wasting the very little that I do using a "zipper" method.  Basically, fillet and rib out just like walleye, then run the knife tip about 1/3 to 1/2 through the thickness of the fillet right down the center line.  Then following that cut, angle the knife towards the top of the fillet and you'll feel the blade "tick" off the y bones.  Notch it at the front, and give that notched piece a pull from head to tail, all the y bones pull out like a zipper.  Done right, it's very fast and wastes very little.  I use it for all sizes of eater pike, but probably works best on the larger end.  Leave the skin on, debone as described, brine and smoke with alder, VERY VERY tasty.

Even baked or fried, jackfish are delicious, especially if they come out of cold water.  Way up north here, that's all year round.  Down south, towards the end of the summer, the flesh turns a deeper yellow and that's when the more "fishy" flavour really starts to set in.
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy January 18, 2013, 06:44:52 PM
Well the vid may take a while. My "camera" left me. Guess I should buy one of my own now.

Hutch

: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: HOOP January 18, 2013, 06:51:44 PM
Smoked jackfish is also VERY tasty.  I'm not sure which method you use to de-bone them, the 3-piece method or whatever is probably the most efficient.  We have so many up here, I'm really not concerned about wasting the very little that I do using a "zipper" method.  Basically, fillet and rib out just like walleye, then run the knife tip about 1/3 to 1/2 through the thickness of the fillet right down the center line.  Then following that cut, angle the knife towards the top of the fillet and you'll feel the blade "tick" off the y bones.  Notch it at the front, and give that notched piece a pull from head to tail, all the y bones pull out like a zipper.  Done right, it's very fast and wastes very little.  I use it for all sizes of eater pike, but probably works best on the larger end.  Leave the skin on, debone as described, brine and smoke with alder, VERY VERY tasty.

Even baked or fried, jackfish are delicious, especially if they come out of cold water.  Way up north here, that's all year round.  Down south, towards the end of the summer, the flesh turns a deeper yellow and that's when the more "fishy" flavour really starts to set in.

Hi Low-1,
I am having trouble picturing this "zipper method".  Can you make a video or point us to one?
: Re: Cleaning pike boneless
: Hutchy January 19, 2013, 11:09:05 PM
Low-1,

I do a very similar method to the one you are doing. If the two methods are similar, one just ends up cutting the y bones almost all the way out, and then pulling them out in a strip.The ends of the bones pull out of the meat, very much like a zipper, and leaves more meat IMO. I do a few more steps... but I think its very similar.

Hutchy