Fried catfish is a symbol of southern cuisine: for many, there is no other way to cook it. Disputes rage over whether it’s better to be fried, breaded, covered in cornmeal, or even dredged in flour. In my opinion, this is a healthy debate.
- Ingredients :
°4-6 catfish fillets, about 1-2 lbs
°1 cup milk or milk
°3/4 cup fine cornmeal (do not use coarsely ground cornmeal)
°1/2 cup flour
°1 teaspoon garlic powder
°1 teaspoon black pepper
°1 teaspoon paprika
°1/2 teaspoon hot pepper
°1/4 teaspoon celery seeds
°Oil for frying (use peanut oil if you can)
1 Heat the oil in the skillet, preheat the oven: In a heavy skillet (I prefer using cast iron), pour enough oil to come out 1/2 inch down the sides of the skillet. Heat the skillet over medium high heat.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit and place a cookie tray inside. Place a wire rack on top of the cookie sheet.
2 Soak the catfish in milk or buttermilk: While the oil is heating, soak the catfish in milk or buttermilk.
3 Mix the cornmeal, flour and spices for scooping: Mix the cornmeal, flour and spices. (Or you can substitute your favorite spices instead.) Place it in a shallow dish for shoveling.
4 Dip the fillets into the flour mixture, then fry in hot oil: let the oil reach 350°F – a good test is to pour some dry breadcrumbs into the oil, and if it sizzles at the same time, you’re good to go.
5 Keep the oven-cooked fillets warm: Once the fish is ready, place it in the oven while the rest of the catfish cooks. Keeping fried catfish warm in the oven will help keep it crispy.