" Cats & Dogs" Catfish and Hush Puppies

It's time for some southern-fried seafood. Do the cooking now, rest your dogs and enjoy the meal later!

Tartar Sauce:

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons Creole mustard
  • 1/4 cup minced green onions
  • 1 teaspoon minced shallots
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped sweet gherkins
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 finely chopped hard-boiled egg
  • salt and pepper, to taste


Catfish:
  • 8 large catfish filets (six to eight ounces each) rinsed and patted dry
  • Salt, pepper and Creole seasoning to taste
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans and/or peanuts
  • Clarified butter, bacon fat or peanut oil for frying


Hush puppies:
  • 3 cups self-rising white cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 green onions, chopped fine
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons rendered bacon fat, reserving and crumbling bacon

Directions:

1. Combine and mix tartar sauce ingredients; cover and refrigerate.

2. Preheat oven to 250F. Season the catfish fillets with seasonings and set aside. Combine the eggs and milk in a large pie plate and whisk together until blended. Divide the flour between two large pie plates; season the first dish of flour with salt, pepper and Creole seasoning; mix the chopped pecans into the second flour pie plate.

3. Heat one inch of peanut oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium high heat until it reaches 350F. Dredge catfish in the seasoned flour and shake off the excess flour; next dip the fillet into the egg mixture; and then coat it well with the nut flour. Pan fry the fillets, carefully turning once after two minutes when the fillets are golden brown. Fry the fillets another two minutes on the other side and then transfer to a parchment lined cookie sheet to keep warm in the oven until ready to eat. Skim any burnt bits of the coating from the oil and then add another inch of oil in preparation for making the hush puppies in the same pan. Allow the new oil to return to a temperature of 350F.

4. Measure the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and place in a large bowl. Add the buttermilk and melted butter and fork mix until the mixture just holds together. Sprinkle in the green onions and crumbled bacon. Using a soup spoon or small ice cream scoop, drop the batter into the hot grease. Fry hushpuppies for about a minute or two per side, turning when crisp and golden. Drain the cooked hushpuppies on paper towels to absorb the extra grease and repeat the process until all the batter has been used.

5. Serve the hot catfish and hush puppies with the tartar sauce and your favorite cole slaw. Garnish each plate with lemon wedges, if desired.

Serves 4-8



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