I live in the South*. I was born in the South, raised in the South and will probably be here my entire life. There is just something about Southern and food and home that are all intertwined. They are part of each other and dependent on each other. And in the South, as a general rule, we love fried food.
For me, fried fish tops the list of fried food I love. We don't eat it often, but I do enjoy frying up some fish dredged in cornmeal every once in a while. The 7 year old isn't very tolerant of seafood, especially fish (he does occasionally enjoy shrimp), so I fix him some chicken tenders in the same cornmeal coating to make him happy.
The fish pictured here is pollack, but we also use flounder frequently. On my trip to the grocery this time around, though, the flounder looked too thin to hold up to frying. You could also use catfish or cod. Yellow cornmeal has more flavor than white cornmeal, and I use it exclusively. Fish needs to cook high and fast, so maintain your oil over a medium high heat and don't walk away from the fish once it hits the pan.
Southern Fried Fish
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 pounds pollack or flounder fillets
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
salt and pepper
1/4 cup milk
In a large skillet, heat oil over medium high heat.
In a shallow dish beat egg and milk together. In a separate shallow dish mix cornmeal, flour, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper.
Dip fish fillets in egg mixture, coating well. Then dip in cornmeal mixture, turning over to coat both sides, patting it in slightly.
Once your oil is hot, carefully place fillets in pan. Cook on each side 5 to 7 minutes until golden brown on both sides. Cook in batches of 2 to 3 fillets at at time.
Drain on paper towel lined plate while cooking the next batch of fish.
*For my readers outside the US, I'm referring to the Southern United States.