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A whole weekend and only one fish

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
It was a beautiful Saturday morning I woke up to bird song and the smell of coffee being brewed over the open fire. And the sight of a perfectly calm lake.

I don't know about you but when I see a sight like this it screams GET YOUR ROD.

So I went packed all my gear and headed for the dock. I put on a red devil (my fav for pike) and started to cast and reel. My second cast and BAM strike the rod tip slapped the water. Then came the crunching sound of the gears in my reel busting. Ok so now I grab the line with one hand and figure I will pull this sucker in by hand.(Not a good Idea without gloves). I was holding my rod with one hand and my line with the other when snap there goes my rod (Daughter sweety that she is didn't tell me she slammed it in the car door). I tugged and pulled and was rewarded with minor cuts to my hands and no more equipment.

But I got my fish

This baby did not want to come out of the weeds. It was 52cm (about 2ft) and weighed a little more then 5 lbs.

Now for your part of my little miss adventure. I have never smoked pike so any rubs, brine or marinade ideas would be great. Also wood suggestions.

Thanks for joining me
Happy smoking
post #2 of 13
This is my first time seeing that kind of a fish. I never smoked fish so I am not sure about rubs, but I love to fish. I do more fresh water fishing.
post #3 of 13
You can smoke that pike if you want to but I will tell you that pike are the best pickling fish you will find. If you are interested I will look up my recipe for pickled fish in wine sauce.PDT_Armataz_01_37.gif
post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
Sounds good jimr I would love to try it

post #5 of 13
This is from elsewhere on this forum.......I can cut and paste but have issues with posting linksicon_redface.gif

Here's the recipe I use for pickling.......Works well for pike, panfish, white bass and small sheepshead or for you "southern folk", freshwater drum... I always fillet the Y-bones out of the pike I use but I think this recipe will soften or dissolve the bones. Not for sure though. I have tried many pickled fish recipes and this is the best I've found.


1 quart fish fillets
5/8 cup canning salt
white vinegar to cover fillets

stir well and place in refrigerator for 6 days stirring well daily. On 6th day rinse thoroughly in cold water. Pack fillets in a gallon jar....layer of fish, then layer of onions. Repeat until all fillets are in jar.

Wine Sauce

4 cups white wine (not cooking wine)
2 cups sugar
2 cups white vinegar
1 Tablespoon pickling spices

Mix well and pour over fish then store in refrigerator for an additional 5-6 days.
post #6 of 13
As much as I love smoke fish, fry them filets up, oh man is pike good when it is fried. My grandfather made me some once... just wow...

Gratz on the catch also, those Pike can fight pretty hard.
post #7 of 13
Never did a pickle for fish myself, but pike and walleye are the best fresh water fryers you could ever want...eating qualities are excellent, with the flesh and flavor being delicate and mild.

Sorry about your gear, but at least you'll be eating the one that almost got away after killing your rod & reel. Seems a fitting end to me. PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif

post #8 of 13
dennis - i've smoked northern pike and it's turned out great. a basic brine is equal amounts of salt and sugar plus whatever herbs, spices or flavorings that you want. it is easy to overpower the fish, so go light on everything unless you are trying to push the tastes in a certain direction. my salt/sugar amount is usually a half-cup of each but this is to fill a gallon jar full of water and then with fish, so you might cut it back for a smaller amount and halve it.

in any case, after that you can either cold or hot smoke - i've done both and really don't have a favorite, it just comes down to what you want to do. i will recommend a sprinkling of red pepper flakes and your favorite herb as you put it in the smoker. also, the salt/sugar can be substituted with soy sauce/honey etc. as you see fit.

here are some notes on the subject that i wrote down for cold smoking.


i haven't really done any notes on hot smoking becuase it was basically just a season-it-and-toss-it-on-the-smoker deal. in that case, it was about 250 degrees for a couple of hours or until the fish was done using the normal ways of determining done-ness.

nice pike, by the way!
post #9 of 13
Nice fish Smokingd. My experience with northern pike is that they are loaded with pin-bones. Real good tasting and as others have said-fry 'em!
post #10 of 13
speaking of those bones, here's a way to deal with them:

post #11 of 13
One of the benefits of pickling fish is that the vinegar dissolves the tiny bones. I wonder if adding vinegar to the brine would help with that (before smoking?)

post #12 of 13
Sheepshead are a saltwaterfish. freshwater drum are what is called a goo.
Sheephead are as fine a eating fish as any fish there is . White flaky fillets just like a sac a lait (Crappie to you northern folks).
Just harder to fillet than trout or red drum.
If you ever see bay snapper on the menu , 99% of the time it's sheephead.
post #13 of 13
>>> I wonder if adding vinegar to the brine would help with that (before smoking?)<<<

i don't think that would work. in order to get the same effect, you'd have to ahve a lot of vinegar and a lot of time, more than the usual brining process, at least.

what you'd end up with would probably be similare to seviche, which is good stuff, but already "cooked."
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