Cornmeal-Crusted Catfish with Creole Sauce

Cornmeal-Crusted Catfish with Creole Sauce: Served with a spicy Creole-style tomato sauce, these easy-to-make catfish fillets are tender and moist and have a crunchy cornmeal coating.

A crispy cornmeal coating is a great way to seal in the tender, moist texture of catfish fillets. The accompanying Creole-style tomato sauce is easy to make and its zesty flavor is a perfect complement for the fish.

Cornmeal-Crusted Catfish with Creole Sauce

Prep Time: 15 minutes Cook Time: 15 minutes Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 4 servings

  • Ingredients:
  • 4 catfish fillets (1-1/4 to 1-1/2 lbs)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons milk (or buttermilk)
  • 1-1/4 cups cornmeal
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil
  • For the Creole Tomato Sauce:
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 green bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bunch (4 to 5) scallions, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  • Hot sauce
  • Pinch of sugar (optional)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 350° F and link a shallow baking pan with foil.

In a shallow dish, whisk together the egg and milk. Combine the cornmeal, 1-1/2 teaspoons salt and a few grinds of black pepper on a large plate or sheet of wax paper. Dip each catfish fillet into the egg mixture, drain off the excess, then coat thoroughly with the cornmeal.

Add about 1/8-inch of oil to the bottom of a large frying pan and heat over medium-high heat. Add the catfish fillets and cook until the coating is crisp and lightly browned, 1-1/2 to 2 minutes per side.

Transfer the fish to the prepared baking pan and place in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes.

While the fish finishes in the oven, make the sauce. Wipe out the pan, add the butter and melt over medium heat.

Add the green pepper and sauté until softened, 3 to 4 minutes, then add the garlic and scallions and continue cooking for an additional 1-1/2 minutes, stirring constantly.

Stir in the tomato sauce and add hot sauce to taste (see notes below). Add a pinch of sugar if desired and continue cooking for an additional 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Plate individual servings of fish and transfer the sauce to a serving bowl to pass at the table.

Recipe Notes:
Frank's Red Hot is our favorite hot sauce for this dish. We generally go easy on the heat so we start with just 3/4 teaspoon and work up from there.

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