Fried Catfish

Ben Fink Photography

Did I say I didn't eat seafood? Well, this is my recipe but my mother always says catfish doesn't count because it's "pond food, not seafood." I do love a good fish fry with crispy cornmeal-breaded catfish filets, finished off with Hush Puppies and Vinegar Slaw.

  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 catfish filets (1 pound total)
  • Lemon wedges, vinegar, and/or store-bought tartar sauce, for serving

1. Pour the oil to a depth of 1/2 inch in a large skillet and place it over medium-high heat. Line a plate with paper towels and set it aside.

2. Place the cornmeal in a medium-size bowl and stir in the salt and pepper until combined.

3. Dredge the filets in the cornmeal mixture to coat on both sides.

4. Reduce the heat to medium. Place the filets in the skillet and cook, turning once, until browned on both sides, 5 to 6 minutes, then transfer them to the paper towel–lined plate to drain.

5. Serve the filets hot with the lemon wedges, vinegar, and/or tartar sauce.

Yield: 
Serves 4
  • A look at the history of sugar, from art and language to 3-D printing

    Darra Goldstein is editor in chief of The Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets, an 888-page reference guide to all things sweet. "The book is really a compendium of human desires, a cultural history of desire for things that are sweet and what it has caused in the world, in both the realm of pleasure and also of pain," she says.

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