The trick to making the perfect Polish Christmas fried carp is to use good quality fish. This is because the card can smell really bad, like river mud. Aside from the smell, the taste of the fish will also suffer. So make sure that you get the fish fresh off the market on the day you want to consume it and ensure that you get it from a reputable shop.
You will also notice that the skin of the carp is nice and crispy just after baking. This is one of the best parts of this recipe. Unfortunately, if you cook the Polish Christmas fried carp in advance, the crispiness of the fish will diminish or vanish. This is why it is highly recommended that you serve it right after cooking.
In Poland, you will find that the carp steaks are called dzwonki or bells. So keep an eye out for this delicacy if you are headed out to any Polish restaurant during the Christmas season.
If you are looking for other recipes that use carp, then try my Polish carp in aspic recipe. It is another delicacy that is common in Polish households. It isn’t particularly linked with Christmas though.
Polish Christmas Fried Carp Recipe
Part I – Wash And Scale The Carp
This is an important part of the recipe. Make sure that you remove all the scales of the carp. Finding a scale when eating is a really unpleasant experience. I recommend rinsing the carp under running water after you have scaled the fish. This will help rinse off any stray scales.
Part II – Cut The Fish Into Steaks
After you are done removing the fish, use a sharp knife and slice the fish into steaks. Discard the head and tail of the carp.
Part III – Dry The Steaks
Pat dry the carp steaks and coat them with salt and pepper. The amount of salt and pepper that you use will depend on your personal preference.
Part IV – Coat The Steak With Flour
Part V – Fry The Steaks
To fry the steaks you can use oil. In some households, they use a combination of oil and pork lard. This gives the Polish Christmas fried carp an intriguing flavor. Frying the fish will take approximately 3-5 minutes on each side of the carp steak.
Part VI – Place The Carp In A Heat Resistant Vessel
Part VII – Preheat The Oven To 356F
Part VIII – Peel And Cut The Onions
For this recipe, you will need 2 onions. Peel and cut the onions into half moons. This will give you a nice texture to the onions which you will be able to taste when eating the carp.
Part IX – Fry The Onions
Fry the onions in oil for around 5 minutes. You will notice that the onions turn translucent. Once done, add these to the fried carp.
Part X – Cover The Vessel With A Lid And Bake For 30 Minutes
Part XI – Reduce The Temperature To 302F
After the carp has baked for 30 minutes, reduce the temperature of the oven to 302F. Remove the lid of the vessel and let the carp continue to bake. This will give the Polish Christmas fried carp its signature crispy skin.
Part XII – Bake For 10 Minutes
FAQ About Polish Christmas Fried Carp
How Do I Tell If The Carp Is Fresh?
For the Polish Christmas fried carp recipe, it is essential that you find the freshest fish in the market. Stale carp tends to have a bad smell that is very similar to the smell of river mud. Aside from the smell, fresh fish is firm. The flesh will bounce back when placed. Even the skin of the carp will look shiny and will have a metallic kind of glow.
Why Do Polish People Eat Carp For Breakfast?
During the Communist regime, the humble carp became really popular. This fish was easy to obtain and cheap. Plus it is easy to farm and tastes really good when prepared right. Today, people still love to use this fish during Christmas time.
The Polish Christmas fried carp recipe is a perfect example. In fact, for some, the carp is a symbol of good luck. This is another reason why it gets added to the Christmas menu.
Why Is It Important To Serve The Polish Christmas Fried Carp Right Out Of The Oven?
The best way to eat the Polish Christmas fried carp is hot. This is because crispy skin is one of the best parts of the dish. If you leave the dish to cool, the skin does not remain crisp and the carp does not taste as good. This is why people tend to time lunch or dinner according to when they pull the carp out of the oven.
- 1 whole carp
- 1 tbsp of salt
- 1 tsp of ground black pepper
- ⅓ cup of all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup of oil
- 3.5oz (100g) of pork lard or more oil
- 2 onions
- Wash and scale the carp.
- Cut the fish into steaks. Throw away the head and tail.
- Dry the steaks, then coat the with salt and pepper.
- Coat the steak with flour
- Fry the steaks in oil and pork lard or just oil. 3-5 minutes on each side.
- Place the carp in the heat-resistant vessel.
- Preheat the oven to 356°F (180°C).
- Peel and cut the onions into half-moons.
- Fry oniosn in oil for about 5 minutes, then add them to carp.
- Cover the vessel with lid and bake for 30 minutes.
- Reduce the temperature to 302°F (150°C) and take the lid off the vessel.
- Bake for another 10 minutes.
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- Ground Black Pepper - Pieprz czarny
- Iodized Table Salt - Sól
- Smalec - Pork Lard
- Rapeseed Oil - Olej Rzepakowy
- Sunflower Oil - Olej słonecznikowy
- All Purpose Flour
- Glass heat-resistant oven dish - Naczynie żaroodporne szklane
- Oven heat-resistant dish - Naczynie żaroodporne metalowe
- Yellow Conventional - Cebula
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 219Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 26mgSodium: 1181mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 8g
These data are indicative and calculated by Nutritionix