How to fillet a Salted Herring

June 20th, 2009 in Tips, Advices & How-to by
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Total cooking time: 15min  
How to Clean Herring

How to Clean Herring

Many of you probably wonder why you would even want to clean and skin the salted herring yourself (ya, it is messy and doesn’t look all that yammi on the pictures below) if you can get cleaned, skinned, filleted, portion herring from the closest supermarket.

The answer is simple, herring fillets from the shop are most probably prepared with oil or/and vinegar, mustard, mayonnaise, onions and other tasty things, however all those tasty things change taste of herring. Which is somewhat important if you want to prepare tasty herring salad.

Well if you are lucky enough to find pickled herring fillets cured only with salt (and a bit of herbs) in your nearby shop then you can skip this post in a favor of better looking recipes. All others, who really want to know how to get fillets from whole salted herrings, are welcome to read.

List of the Salads & Other Recipes to prepare which you will need fillets of salted herring.

Ingredients:

  • Whole salted herring

How to make, step-by-step:

  1. Take whole herring pickled in salt (I usually get it from the local russian shop). You will also need paper towels (believe me, you do!). So take salted herring and put in on the several layers of paper towels:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 1

    How to Clean Herring: Step 1

  2. Cut the head off right below fins:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 2

    How to Clean Herring: Step 2

  3. Cut the herring open:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 3

    How to Clean Herring: Step 3

  4. Remove insides:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 4

    How to Clean Herring: Step 4

  5. And clean inside using the knife:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 5

    How to Clean Herring: Step 5

  6. Cut herring along the spine:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 6

    How to Clean Herring: Step 6

  7. Carefully remove skin from both sides:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 7

    How to Clean Herring: Step 7

  8. Cut the tail off and carefully detach herring fillet from the bones. I know it is easier to say then to do (especially when you do it first time in your life), and most probably you will pull some bones with fillet, it is ok, you can fix it later on:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 8

    How to Clean Herring: Step 8

  9. Detach spine with as much bones as you can from the other part of fillet:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 9

    How to Clean Herring: Step 9

  10. And remove big bones from the prepared fillets by hands. I know if it not much fun, but believe me the taste is worth it:
    How to Clean Herring: Step 10

    How to Clean Herring: Step 10

  11. Now fillets of salted herring are ready for the further use (to prepare herring salad or to be eaten with bread and onions as an appetizer):
    How to Clean Herring

    How to Clean Herring

Tips & Advises

  • It is better to use cold water to clean hands and cooking utensils which were in contact with salted herring. In that way it is easier to remove fish smell.

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8 Responses to “How to fillet a Salted Herring”

  1. katya says:

    Thanks for showing me how to fillet the herring. I finally got some salt herring from an on-line store. I never made it myself before, but I am going to surprise my family. I made it the way my father used to make it. He was from Russia. I like a lot of Russian food, but find that his recipes are often different from other Russian recipes I see. His borscht and salat olivier were both different from the recipes on this site. The way he made the herring is: soak fish in cold water, changing water several times, for 12 or so hours, or overnight. Clean and bone fish. Cut fish in pieces. Put fish in bowl. Pour regular vegetable oil over fish, to cover. Add some sliced onion and some peppercorns. Put in fridge for a couple of days if you can wait that long.
    This makes me think of my childhood, thanks for the instructions…

  2. Walentina says:

    molodez

  3. Walentina says:

    k soshaleniu poka ne mogu goworit po angliiski.
    Ja sdes t.e v Fort Collins na 2,5 mesjaza, chotela prigotovit naschim ami-drusjam schubu ne snau gde kupit seledku. Stala iskat po inetu seledku i naschla rodnenkii rezept.

    Nu poka.

    walentina

  4. Milla says:

    thank you. finaly russian cooking site!

  5. Nabi says:

    thank u for ur showing how to fillet a Salted Herring

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