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Salmon heads

  • t

The Korean-owned fish markets in my neighborhood all sell fresh salmon heads at a very low price. I'd thought they might make a nice fish stock, but it's been my understanding that oily fleshed fish like salmon isn't good for stockmaking. Anyone have any salmon head suggestions?

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  1. My grandmother, who is Japanese as am I, makes a fish stock out of the heads then pops the eyeballs into her mouth and smiles at us as it goes "pop" in her mouth. One day I will try it. Maybe.

    1 Reply
    1. re: steve

      as does my cambodian g,friend.The eyes,cheeks,etc.add to the breadth of stock.the eyes take some getting used to.J

    2. Salmon heads and skeletons make a wonderful stock, and there's enough meat for a chowder, too.

      It's the big white fish with the thick fatty skin that make an oily tasting stock.

      1. It is delicious grilled like they do with Hamachi heads in Japanese restaurants. Be sure to add enough kosher salt. I also panfry them with salt and pepper and oil, although you house will smell like fish oil for a long time. Finally, I think if you want to make a stock, you should panfry them slightly before making the soup. It takes some of the fishiness out. Maybe because some of the oil is rendered...I'm not sure. Margret

        1 Reply
        1. re: Margret

          I think if you put some ginger in the oil it's supposed to help cut the smell

        2. I do not know if the following Web page will help you.

          Link: http://www.kikkoman.com/contents/foru...

          1. Make soup with it. Julienne some ginger and simmer it for a long time with the fish head (after you wash/scrub it). Afterwards, pull the meat outta the fish and add some soft tofu. At this point you can add other things like spinach or shrimp. But I prefer only the tofu. Salt/white pepper to season before serving. The ginger cuts away some of the oiliness/fishiness.

            1. I've had salmon heads in miso soup in a Japanese restaurant and it was dee-licious! Now I don't have a recipe for it, but based on what I had and knowing how to do Chinese fish-head soup, I think what you do is to simmer the heads in a miso broth with scallions and some slices of ginger. You could add any other vegetables you like. You could even fry the heads first as you'd do for Chinese fish-head soup.
              I'd welcome any suggestions from Hounds who've made this dish before.

              1. I was in the Japanese fish market this weekend and based on some comments at our recent chowdinner..and the raves of another customer, I bought some...broiled for a little bit...absolutely delicious..bit of work to get at the meat but well worth it...and yes, I ate an eye...ok but not something I'm in a hurry to eat again.

                1 Reply
                1. re: 9lives

                  I grew up eating broiled salmon heads and collars. Delicious!

                  And I also never go the eye thing -- doesn't do a thing for me.

                2. My mom always uses them as a base for her Vietnamese sweet/sour/hot soup.

                  1. Makes great stock and/or soup!!! You can remove the fat from stocks once chilled; and can enjoy great soups if your diners are willing to or know how to suck and extract the meaty, rich goodness from the llightly simmered heads.

                    1. I bake them, take the meat off - mmm, messy. Meat goes on pasta, rice, in salmon salad, corn & salmon chowder, etc. The rest gets used for stock.

                      1. Mount it on the wall ... right next to Bambi.

                        Short of that, make stock or soup. It's absolutely delicious.