Fried Catfish

  • Serves

    serves 2


The cooks at Carmack Fish House in Vaiden, Mississippi, serve this dish with tartar sauce and a side of hush puppies. Our kitchen director, Hunter Lewis, who hails from the South, wrote about catfish in "Pride of the Delta" (March 2009).


  • Canola or peanut oil, for frying
  • 2 cups yellow cornmeal
  • 1 13 cups flour
  • 14 cup seasoned salt, such as Lawry's
  • 2 tbsp. baking powder
  • 1 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 (3–5-oz.) boneless, skinless catfish filets
  • 12 lemon, cut into wedges
  • Tartar Sauce, for serving


Step 1

In an 8-qt. pot, pour in oil to a depth of 3". Heat oil over medium-high heat until it registers 350˚ on a deep-fry thermometer.

Step 2

Meanwhile, combine cornmeal, flour, seasoned salt, baking powder, and pepper in a large bowl. Add the catfish and toss to coat. Gently shake off the excess cornmeal mixture and transfer catfish to a rack.

Step 3

Working in 2 batches, fry the catfish in the hot oil until golden brown and cooked through, about 6 minutes. Using tongs, transfer catfish to a wire cooling rack set over a rimmed baking sheet to let drain. Transfer fish to 2 plates and serve with a lemon wedge and tartar sauce.

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