FIRST, I MUST ADMIT THAT I STOLE THIS CATFISH CAKES RECIPE FROM MY DAD…
Borrowed…lets say I borrowed his recipe and modified it a bit. I don’t think he’ll mind. Here’s a tip for how to cook wild catfish for those that complain of the strong taste; soak the catfish fillets in a combination of water, lemon juice and vinegar for about an hour. For two pounds of wild catfish use 8 cups of water, 1 cup of vinegar and the juice of 1 lemon. Drain the fish and pat dry before proceeding with this recipe.
Make these INCREDIBLE Catfish Burgers with this catfish cakes recipe. Just add slaw (here’s a good slaw recipe), fresh tomatoes, pickles and put is all on a bun
This helps to reduce the strong taste of the wild catfish, which some people object to, while retaining the natural catfish flavor. Farmed catfish usually doesn’t have a strong taste so there is no need to soak it in this solution. It’s rather mild…too mild for me, but it’s easier to find fresh or frozen in local grocery stores.
I get my wild caught catfish from, you guessed it-my Dad. He goes fishing two to three days a week, that’s down from the four to five days a week he was going out on the water when he first retired. It’s a lot of work catching the fish, cleaning them and in the case of catfish skinning them. He then portions the fish and vacuum seals them for freezing, I always bring a few bags of frozen catfish back home with me so I can make this recipe as well as FISH TACOS get the recipe HERE.
I’ve changed up my dads recipe a bit. He boils his catfish-I bake mine. He uses Ritz crackers-I use Keebler Club crackers…or a similar store brand cracker. He uses chopped raw onion-I saute mine.
I use stainless steel ice cream scoops to portion out the mixture for the catfish cakes and fritters, this helps to keep the size consistent. I have a bunch of these scoops in a variety of sizes and use them for so many kitchen jobs like making BBQ CHICKEN MEATBALLS (get the recipe here), portioning cupcake batter, cookie dough, crab cakes and of course ice cream-they’re a useful, inexpensive tool. I have a few that I only use for baking and I keep them with my baking supplies-no one wants fishy cookies.
YOU CAN ORDER THESE STAINLESS STEEL ICE CREAM SCOOPS FROM AMAZON HERE> Vktech Stainless Steel Ice Cream Scoop Spoon
- 2-1/2 pounds catfish fillets
- 2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil- divided
- 2 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
- 1 medium onion
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1-1/2 cups crushed Keebler Club Crackers or similar store brand
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 1 egg-beaten
- oil for sauteing or frying
- Pre-heat your oven to 400 degres
- Line a baking tray with foil (for easy clean up) and spread the oil on the tray
- Place the catfish fillets on the tray in a single layer and season both sides of the fillets with old bay
- Bake the catfish for 8-10 minutes or until the fillets are cooked through
- While the catfish is cooking, dice the onion and bell pepper and saute in 1 tablespoon of oil for 5 minutes or until softened.
- Let the catfish and onion mixture cool for 30 minutes
- Break the catfish fillets into chunks and combine with sauteed onions and peppers as well as the cracker crumbs, mayonnaise and egg
- Use an ice cream scoop to portion the catfish cakes into patties. 3 ounce patties for entree size or 1 ounce balls for appetizer fritters
- Chill the catfish cakes in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour so they will hold together
- To saute 3 ounce catfish cakes-heat ¼ inch of oil in a skillet over a medium flame
- Saute the catfish cakes in batches 3-4 minutes per side
- Drain on paper towels
- For 1 ounce catfish fritters-
- Use a high sided pot- at least 6 inches high. Heat 2 inches of oil to 350 degrees
- Deep fry the 1 ounce catfish balls in batches for 3-4 minutes until golden brown
- Drain on paper towels