When I was a little girl, my father would often take my siblings and I fishing during the summer. We usually would go to my Uncle Paul’s pond in Guthrie, Oklahoma. Uncle Paul had a catfish bait company and started his company with a bait recipe my great Uncle Carl gave him. Uncle Carl had a beautiful garden on his property in Edmond, Oklahoma. Carl always grew hot peppers and made his own hot sauce. Carl developed a catfish bait recipe from his own hot sauce and chum, and gave the recipe to his brother Paul. Thus began Magic Bait Company.
Uncle Paul’s pond had catfish, bass and trout, but we always tried to catch one very large grandpa of a catfish we called Gus. Gus was actually caught a couple of times but my Dad never had the heart to keep him. He always threw Gus back to live another day.
My dad took me fishing when I went home for a visit this summer. It had been a long time since we fished together, and we had a great time. We caught a few trout the first day and one good size bass the second.
My dad taught me how to gut and clean the fish. I was never a big fan of that task, but I also learned how to grill and fry fish, which I do willingly! We usually keep it fairly simple by frying the trout and grilling the bass.
How to Fry Fish
- Coat the fish in your favorite spicy brown mustard.
- Dredge in cornmeal mixed with 1 teaspoon of pepper and a half teaspoon of sea salt.
- Heat a cast iron skillet with 1/2 inch of canola oil. This is a very shallow pan fry, not deep frying.
- Cook until golden brown on both sides.
How to Grill Fish
- Coat the fish fillets in Rub with Love Seafood Rub, which I buy for my dad at The Chopping Block. He used to use a different rub, but ever since I sent this to him, he uses nothing else but Rub with Love.
- Coat the fish with a little olive oil and place it on the grill topped with red onion slices.
- Grill for about 8 minutes per inch of thickness or until it starts to firm and resist flaking. Once it starts to flake, it's overcooked and will be dry.
A lot of people are hesitant to grill fish because it can be a little tricky. That's why our Seafood 101 and Seafood on the Grill cooking classes are so popular. Our chefs will show you different methods to achieve perfectly grilled fish and not leave half of it on your grill! Check out one of our upcoming classes:
If you can't wait until class, watch our Owner/Chef Shelley Young's video on How to Grill Fish.
Like this? Watch more of our How to Cook Videos. And if you aren't having luck fishing, try Hooked on Fish as your local sustainable seafood provider. Both locations of The Chopping Block are pick up locations for Hooked on Fish.