The Gefilte Fish Experiment

When I first tried making homemade gefilte fish, I knew it was going to be a challenging and daunting experience. I knew it would involve me getting elbows deep in ground fish, and I knew there would be no fewer than three fish heads to contend with. Onions would be grated and I would cry…a lot. I’d have to touch slimy things that would gross me out, I would have to come to terms with tasting raw fish (and not the cool sushi kind), and most importantly, I’d have to do it all on a wing and a prayer, with no real recipe to guide me.

So, what does a girl do when she knows she’s in for a heck of a tumultuous kitchen caper? Why, she films it, of course!

Ben – my loving, patient, caring, patient, supportive, patient, and encouraging eager kitchen beaver of a husband – filmed the whole process for posterity. We wound up with 1 hour and 10 minutes of footage, and managed to cram all that into 11 and a half minutes of video. (Don’t worry, there will be plenty of footage in the blooper reel Ben is currently working on.)

The Gefilte Fish Experiment

We had a very sophisticated filming setup, as you can see from the photo. Ben propped our laptop on top of our microwave (right next to the sink, which, in hindsight, was a really really really not smart thing to do). I spent the whole time talking into the little blue light, and Ben even set up an external monitor so he could see what he was filming.

See that dangerous cord snaking across the floor?

Do you see the peril my loving husband put me in just so he could have easy access to the live on-camera action?

Did I mention the dangerous cord snaking across the floor at my feet????

Oh, I did? Well, I feel it bears repeating.

If you’ve got a spare 11 and a half minutes, and you’re interested to see how a clueless girl tries to make gefilte fish without any rhyme, reason, or recipe, please check out the video here:

I really hope you enjoy it. I know Ben and I did. In fact, Ben enjoyed it so much that he now has his eyes on purchasing an actual video camera. Like, one that’s not a laptop. One that doesn’t involve a perilous snaking cord of death wrapped around my feet. One with a real microphone and an easy light attachment that doesn’t make me look like I have consumption.

Do people still call it consumption?

At any rate, please watch and enjoy. Here’s another behind-the-scenes photo of me sticking my head in the freezer to quell the burning in my eyes from all the onions I was grating. :-)

The Gefilte Fish Experiment


One last thing: Since you can’t enjoy gefilte fish without some nice, spicy horseradish, please listen to this audio clip from the Dinner Party Download. It’s about how these Pickle Guys in New York City (literally, that’s what they’re called) have been making homemade horseradish for Passover every year since 1910. The clip is only 6 minutes long and it’s quite a hoot.

To quote my dad, I can almost taste the smell of it.


P.S. If you’re reading this blog post in your e-mail and the video/audio players don’t work, please go to the post on my blog page directly to see everything.


  1. gary edles says:

    Loved the video! Glad to see you “hock” the fish rather than “chop.” More authentic that way.


    • Glad you liked it!! It was quite the experience. Ben and I are working on our hocking craft…



  1. […] promised, I’m now happy to present you all with the outtakes from my gefilte fish experiment. These were not some of my finest moments in the kitchen, I warn you. But, they include all of the […]

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