Cornmeal Catfish with Remoulade

A couple of weeks a go, we went to lunch at a little restaurant that specializes in Southern style cooking.  The drinks served in Mason jars were fun, but the fun stopped there. I tried the mac and cheese (gloppy/gluey), Buttermilk Fried Chicken (overdone) and the Hush Puppies (heavy, greasy).  Grant ordered the Blackened Catfish Po Boy.  The waiter plopped down 4 teeeeenie strips of overcooked, blackened fish on a big bun PILED with about an inch of coleslaw.  Seriously, each piece of fish was the size on my pinkie finger.  It looked like a slaw sandwich. Grant ate it right up, and a good portion of mine too.  Even though it wasn't my lunch, I thought about it all day.
The next day, I decided to have a re-do on the fish portion of our meal and we had us a little fish fry.  Have you ever cooked catfish?  No, you don't have to look at their ugly faces, just unwrap the cellophane, bread and fry.  Yum.
So. Much. Better.
You're gonna love it.

Cornmeal Fried Catfish with Remoulade
adapted slightly from Chowhound.com recipe -Kate Ramos
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1/2 cup finely ground yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup cake flour
2 teaspoons ground cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning the fish
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning the fish
1 cup vegetable oil
2 pounds catfish fillets, cut into 3- to 4-ounce strips

1.  Place cornmeal, flour, cayenne, paprika, salt, and pepper in a shallow dish and whisk to thoroughly

2.  Heat vegetable oil over medium heat in a 12-inch cast iron skillet to 350°F. Line a plate with
several layers of paper towels; set aside.

3.  Use a paper towel to blot the fish pieces dry, season on all sides with salt and pepper, then
dredge in the cornmeal mixture, being sure to cover all sides. Tap fish pieces lightly to shake off
any excess coating.

4.  Fry fish in batches, turning once, until deep golden brown and crisp on the outside with a flaky
interior, about 6 minutes total. 

5.  Remove fish from the pan with a slotted spatula to the paper-towel-lined plate to drain. While the
pieces are still hot, season well with salt. Serve with lemon wedges and rémoulade.

Simple Remoulade Sauce
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1 cup mayo

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
3 teaspoons chopped parsley, optional
2 teaspoons brown mustard
2 tablespoons sweet relish
1/2 cup ketchup
1 teaspoon horseradish
dash paprika
Mix all ingredients together and serve chilled.
-The original recipe for frying the catfish calls for 6 cups veggie oil, I reduced it to about 1, and fried in batches of about 4 fillets at a time.  

1 comment:

  1. I love your version. So hard to get good fish sandwiches. Even harder to find a good southern food restaurant in our neck of the woods.


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