Pickled Mackerel


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


Appears in

Home Made

By Yvette van Boven

Published 2011

  • About

This is a good recipe as a replacement for pickled herring. That is what it most resembles, but since it’s freshly prepared, it is much better than herring that has been sitting in a glass jar for weeks.


  • approx. 6 mackerel fillets (ask the fishmonger to fillet three mackerels for you, or maybe you can do it yourself?)
  • 1–2 red capsicums (bell peppers), in thin strips
  • 1 tbsp juniper berries, crushed
  • approx. 4 bay leaves
  • 3 tbsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 4 cloves
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp white peppercorns
  • 200 ml (6 fl oz/¾ cup) red wine vinegar
  • 200 ml (6 fl oz/¾ cup) water
  • few sprigs of oregano


Place a non-stick pan on the heat. Place the fillets, with the skin up, in the hot pan for 10 seconds to singe. Arrange them in a dish with the skin up. Heat all other ingredients in a saucepan for the marinade. At the very last moment, add the oregano sprigs. Cover the fish with the hot sauce. The fish will be soaked and curl upward. Immediately cover the dish with plastic wrap and leave to cool. Place in the refrigerator to marinate for at least 1 day (and night), but preferably 2 days. Test whether the fish is cooked. If the fish is big, it often has to be one day longer. Serve the fish as an appetiser with potato salad or on bread with a drink.