Cookstr.com

Fried Catfish

Updated February 23, 2016
This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

It’s gospel, as far as I’m concerned: No catfish you ever make will ever be as good as catfish rolled in cornmeal and deep-fried. If you want to give it some extra moxie, marinate it in something good, as I do in this recipe. The other article of faith is the great superiority of small, wild catfish to big, farm-raised ones. Unfortunately, the catfish you find in the store is almost certainly farm-raised, which not only has an off-taste to me but also is too big.

The essential trick in frying fish is to keep the oil at 375 degrees. Use a fat thermometer to monitor this. Whatever utensil you have that will keep the heat up is fine. I’ve had good luck with a black iron skillet with an inch of oil, a deep Dutch oven with a couple of quarts of oil, and a good electric fryer.

Serves2 to 4

Cooking Methodpan-frying

CostInexpensive

Easy

Total Timeunder 1 hour

OccasionCasual Dinner Party

Recipe Coursemain course

Dietary Considerationegg-free, soy free, tree nut free

Mealdinner

Taste and Texturecrisp, savory

Ingredients

  • 2 lb. small catfish fillets
  • 3 Tbsp. yellow mustard
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp. juice from a jar of dill pickles
  • 2 tsp. milder Louisiana hot sauce, such as Crystal
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup corn flour (Fish-Fry)
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. granulated garlic
  • Peanut oil, for frying

Instructions

  1. Wash the catfish and remove the skin and any remaining bones. Unless the fillets are very small, cut them on the bias into strips about 1½ inches wide.

  2. Blend the mustard, lemon juice, pickle juice, hot sauce, and Worcestershire sauce in a bowl. Put the catfish fillets into the bowl and toss to coat with the marinade. Let marinate for about 30 minutes, refrigerated.

  3. Combine the corn flour, cornmeal, salt, and garlic with a fork in a large bowl. Put 4-6 pieces of catfish into the corn-flour mixture and toss around to coat the catfish. Repeat with the remaining fish.

  4. Pour the oil into a cast-iron skillet or a Dutch oven to a depth of 1 inch and place over medium-high heat until the temperature reaches 375 degrees. Working in batches, fry the catfish until they turn golden brown. Remove with a skimmer (or, better, the spider utensil used by Asian cooks). Drain on paper towels.

  5. Serve with tartar sauce and pickles and hot sauce. And don’t forget the Hush Puppies.

YOUR RECENTLY VIEWED RECIPES

Reviews

Include a Photo Include a Photo

Click the button above or drag and drop images onto the button. You can upload two images.

Cancel Reply to Comment

Thanks for your comment. Don't forget to share!

Close

Report Inappropriate Comment

Are you sure you would like to report this comment? It will be flagged for our moderators to take action.

Thank you for taking the time to improve the content on our site.

Sign In to Your Account

Close Window
Sign In with one of your Social Accounts
Facebook
Google
Twitter
OR
Sign In using Email and Password