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Getting a quality pike is not easy. Margaret gets her pikes at Lafayette Road store. After cleaning fish you cut head and tail off (save these parts!) and divide rest into 3 in. wide steaks. Then prepare broth by cooking 4 carrots, 4 parsley roots (you can substitute it with parsnip roots) and 4 small onions in 3 cups of water. Add half teaspoon salt, pepper and a spoon of sugar. When vegetables are soft, add fish, including head and tail, and slowly cook fish for around 15 minutes.
Cool mixture down, and transfer fish to a platter, trying to reassemble fish again. You may put something whimsical in its mouth, like an egg or a small fruit. Or a mouse. You know, pikes are carnivores… Decorate with slices of cooked carrots.
Strain broth and refrigerate it. If it turns solid, you are lucky. It means there was enough gelatin in head and tail. If it does not solidify, add a little gelatin, not more than a quarter packet, dissolve and refrigerate. Warm up solidified broth gently, and pour over fish. Refrigerate again. When solid, decorate with lemon slices, and parsley leaves.
Serve with sauces, such as tartar or horseradish.
Polish people subscribe to old Roman proverb, that “fish enjoys swimming.” Therefore consume this delicious, sophisticated dish with some well frozen vodka, or a glass of light white wine.