Crispy, flaky, and tender all in one, this Classic Fried Catfish is a true Southern delight.
Classic Fried Catfish
Yields: 6 servings
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1½ tablespoons hot sauce
- 6 (6- to 8-ounce) catfish fillets
- Canola oil, for frying
- 2 cups plain yellow cornmeal
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- Garnish: lemon wedges
- In a large bowl, whisk together milk and hot sauce. Add fillets, tossing to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- In a large Dutch oven, pour oil to a depth of 4 inches, and heat over medium heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350°.
- In a large shallow dish, whisk together cornmeal, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. Remove fillets from milk mixture. Dredge in cornmeal mixture, shaking off excess. Working in batches, fry catfish until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Let drain on paper towels.
- In a small bowl, stir together mayonnaise, relish, and lemon juice. Serve tartar sauce with fried catfish. Garnish with lemon wedges, if desired.