Total Time
Prep 20 mins
Cook 20 mins

Delicious little silver fish about the size of a woman's pinky finger. If smelt are unavailable, small sardines might be substituted. Overnight brining not included in preparation time. From the Mississippi Valley chapter of the United States Regional Cookbook, Culinary Arts Institute of Chicago, 1947.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Clean smelt.
  2. Soak in salt water overnight in refrigerator; rinse.
  3. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  4. Pour boiling water over smelt and allow to stand for five minutes.
  5. Place the fish in a baking pan.
  6. Place a thin slice of bacon over each fish (if large) or a generous covering (if small).
  7. Sprinkle with pepper as desired; add beef stock and bake in a moderate oven 20 minutes or until fish are cooked through.