How To Clean Fillet Northern Pike & Remove the Y-Bones

PLEASE NOTE: If you want to see how to cut the initial filet, go to Walleye Heaven's Walleye Cleaning Page and do the first couple of steps.

By Jim & Tracy Booi
Owners of Booi's Fly-in Fishing
www.boois.com

This method results in fillets totally boneless. Generations of Booi Outfitters have and continue to use this method.

Your knife should not be razor sharp. Start with a fillet, skin on and ribs out. It's important to note that pike bones angle upwards to the back of the fish. Ribs out and skin on you take your knife held vertically starting at the tail, press lightly and swipe the fillet to expose the bones left in the meat.

1. You will notice a solid line and a dotted line 1/2 to 2 cm apart.

2. Half cm from the solid line on the outside cut vertically 1 cm deep from the head to the start of the anal fin.

3. 1/2 cm from the dotted line on the outside, cut 1/2 - 1 cm vertically from the head to the anal fin.

4. Go back to the dotted line cut and cut in 1 cm horizontally and follow the bones down to the end.

5. Go back to what you just did and do it again. 1 cm deep cuts until you get to the end. Do not cut thru the skin, the bones should stop about 1/2-1 cm from the skin.

6. At the solid line cut horizontally on the underside of the bones 1-2 cm deep cuts travelling from head to tail. You should be able to see your blade through the opening on the dotted side. Continue following, until the Y-Bones are cut out.

7. And, there you have it. Totally boneless northern pike fillets, the Booi Way.

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