The silver smelt is a small silver and yellowish fish that has a golden shimmer to it, when freshly caught. The Faroese call it Gullaks – Golden Salmon – and its mild flesh works excellently when used in fishcakes.
The silver smelt has white meat that is rich in protein. The high levels of protein result in the meat retaining significant amounts of moisture. This makes the silver smelt ideal for fishcakes and other dishes using minced fish. Silver smelt also work very well as fillets.
The silver smelt grows slowly, but the females will grow slightly faster than the males. After a year, the silver smelt is around 10-16 cm long and after 5 years it is about 30 cm long. Only after 10 years does it reach 38 cm in length. They can grow up to 60 cm at the most, at which point they are about 25-30 years and weight about 2 kilograms.