Fish heads, fish heads, roly-poly fish heads.

April 25, 2016

Fish skeletons aren’t just food for cartoon alley cats. They’re also great for flavoring soups or making rich fish stock. So the next time you’re filleting a fish, make sure to save the bones—or just ask your fishmonger for a fish head or two—and whip up one of these delicious recipes.

1. Senegalese-Style Seafood Gumbo 
This delicious, untraditional gumbo starts with a broth enriched with red snapper heads and bones.

2. Sardinian Seafood Stew 
A full two-and-a-half pounds of fish heads and bones goes into the stock for this seafood-packed stew.

3. Steamed Sea Bass with Tamarind Sauce 
This tender, healthy fish is served with a sauce made with homemade fish stock and tangy tamarind puree.

 © JOHN KERNICK

4. Classic Fish Stock 
You can make this stock and freeze it for up to a month.

5. Steamed Red Snapper Packets 
This fish is served with a side of “fish tea”—a broth similar to bouillabaisse.

6. Fish Curry with Tamarind 
Chef Zak Pelaccio likes to throw a fish head or two into this creamy curry.

7. Red Snapper Soup with Fresh Bean Sprouts and Garlic Oil 
This refreshing Vietnamese soup starts with a flavorful broth made with fish heads and bones, fish sauce, lemongrass and ginger.