Spicy Fried Fish

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     My dad loves fish.  I can remember him taking my brother and I fishing when we were just kids and coming home with several large fish that my mother cleaned and fried.  While I loved going fishing with my dad it totally creeped me out to watch my mom clean and cook the fish.  That image stayed with me for a long time and I didn’t even try to eat fish until I met my husband and he got me to try tilapia.

      While I’m still not a huge fish eater, I do like tilapia when it’s cooked right.  My favorite way of cooking fish is to pan fry it.  I thought all fried fish were created equally but after trying this fried fish recipe I know that is not the case.

       The fish is brined in a spicy, salty mixture then dredged through a spiced panko mixture.  I pan fried it instead of deep frying it but the result is a golden brown crust that is both spicy and flavorful.  I added a touch of vinegar to my fish and my husband had his with tarter sauce.  It was delicious.  I can’t wait to make this fried fish for my dad!

Spicy Fried Fish  (adapted from Bon Appetit)
3 T. kosher salt
3 T. Frank’s Red Hot sauce
6 tilapia filets (or catfish)
1 1/2 c. panko breadcrumbs
2 T. flour
1 t. black pepper
1 t. garlic powder
1 t. parsley 
1/2 t. cayenne pepper
Olive oil for frying

1.  In a gallon size freezer bag combine the salt, hot sauce, and 4 cups of hot water.  Shake until the salt has dissolved.  Chill in the freezer for 15 minutes or until the mixture is cool.

2.  Place the tilapia filets in the brine and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.

3.  In a medium bowl combine the panko, flour, black pepper, garlic powder, parsley, and cayenne pepper.  Mix well.

4.  Heat enough olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat to completely cover the bottom.

5.  Rinse the tilapia in cold water and pat dry.  Dredge through the panko mixture and place in the oil 3 pieces of fish at a time.  Cook for 3-5 minutes per side or until the fish is golden brown.

6.  Transfer to paper towels to drain and repeat with remaining tilapia.

This post linked to: 
Tempt My Tummy Tuesdays,  Totally Tasty Tuesdays, Made From Scratch Tuesdays

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