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Mar 29, 2012 05:17 PM

Carp anyone?

Several factors have led me to the decision to fish for and learn to prepare carp this summer: A) it's an invasive species here and could stand some predation B) Many other cultures-outside of the USA- not only eat, but seem to very much enjoy carp C) it is (essentially) free and I am broke

Does anyone have any tips on anything from fishing for to cooking carp or maybe even other rough fish?

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  1. The one time I've eaten carp was in a Chinese restaurant, served whole and smothered in black bean sauce. It was excellent! You would have to make the sauce from scratch, because buying enough of it in those little jars would be too expensive.

    1 Reply
    1. re: GH1618

      I will look into the bean sauce, yum, thanks!

    2. in making gefilte fish-some ppl use a small amount of ground carp

      1 Reply
      1. re: jpr54_1

        I have heard that... I may take a look at some gefilte fish recipes for ideas, too. Thank you :)

      2. You might want to look up 'Karpfen Blau"/Carp Blue. The fish is gently rinsed only ( not scrubbed) and cooked in water, with additions of white wine, vinegar, peppercorns, bay leaves, salt.
        We serve this with sour cream mixed with freshly grated horseradish and grated tart apple. Pretty good! My Mil liked to prepare this dish on New Year's Day to bring you luck for the rest of the year. ( all those scales are supposed to resemble pennies.... )

        1 Reply
        1. re: RUK

          That sounds delicious! Lovely tradition :) Thanks for sharing that!

        2. You must take my response with a grain of salt, because I do not like freshwater fish in general. I remember my grandmother baking a carp. It tasted awful. There are several problems with wild carp. First of all, they tolerate warmer, eutrophic waters....the kind that are green and muddy. This does not contribute to good flavor in fish. In fact, it tends to make the fish taste just like the muddy pond water they live in. You do not mention your area. In general, freshwater fish are more likely to harbor toxins than salt water fish, so mercury and PCBs, dioxins, are a big problem in many areas. In many bodies of freshwater in NY state, Conn., and Mass. there are lots of lakes in which you are simply not allowed to eat the fish due to contamination. Now, maybe if you live in one of the western states, or parts of Minn. or Wis., it may be less of a problem. But carp grow big (check out the website if it still exists), and are fatty...a recipe for toxicity in poor water. That said.....the traditional method of carp fishing is with doughballs, corn, or simply compressed damp bread. I have had luck simply with worms. In my college days, I caught an 18 lb carp with a worm on 6 lb test line. Took me half an hour to bring in. When I saw it, I was so disgusted that I just cut it free after weighing it. It was hideous. My father couldn't understand why I would release such a delicious fish....................................

          1 Reply
          1. re: EricMM

            I work in natural resources and am pretty familiar with those concerns. Yes, you are definitely right! Fortunately I live in an area with a relatively low risk of contamination-on the St Croix River on the border between MN and WI. And, the carp get pretty darn big here! Thank you very much for the bait tips, that's great! :)

          2. I don't know which species of carp you are talking about, but in Japan, we eat Carp "arai". "arai" is similar to sashimi (raw), but you put them in warm water (122F or so) briefly, and put them in ice water. It basically kills parasites. Or we braise it with sugar + soysauce, the typical method in Japan. The species we eat is Cyprinus carpio. But I'm not particularly fond of carps because it is difficult to remove that strong earthy flavor.

            3 Replies
            1. re: naoki

              Thank you! I love the soy sauce and sugar idea! :)

              1. re: naoki

                Man I wish they served koi no arai in America. I never tried it but it would be nice to have some chefs who can work that art.

                Now back to the subject of invasive carp eating. Sushi is honestly the best entry for the carp. Most people expect odd exotic fishes in sushi restaurants. I think this is a good choice for the Lionfish too. The poisonous fish eating makes great marketing for sushi chefs.

                I posted some koi-arai photos from web below.

                1. re: asiancarpboy

                  Freshwater fish can be very dangerous to eat raw, as they are intermediate hosts for the roundworms that infect freshwater snails. They are sometimes called "liver flukes". Probably deep freezing first would make them safer, if cold enough and for a long enough time, but never fresh.