Sunday, June 17, 2012

Blackened Catfish and Tropical Slaw

Fried catfish is good. I'll give you that. Oh who am I kidding? I grew up in Arkansas. Fried catfish is awesome! With hushpuppies! But this blackened catfish is awfully good, and not quite so ... fried. Not that there's anything wrong with fried. Sometimes I just need a change. Or my thighs do, at any rate.

In a small bowl, mix together 1 teaspoon of salt, a teaspoon of oregano, half a teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper, a teaspoon of paprika, half a teaspoon of cumin and a quarter teaspoon of ceyenne pepper. Or more if you're braver than I am. Rub that on four catfish filets. Heat a large pan over medium high heat. When the pan is hot, drizzle enough olive oil in there to cover the bottom, then cook the fish on each side for about 3 minutes - longer if you've got big honkin' catfish filets. I made two, because there were only two of us for dinner. I also didn't mix the spices together because I'm lazy. I just sprinkled them on the catfish. I figured they'd mix up in the pan.

To go along with the catfish, I made a Tropical Slaw using two of my favorite ingredients - mango coconut pepper sauce and blood orange vinegar. I turned Natalie, my brother and my Mom onto the vinegar. It's really, REALLY good. Makes a great vinaigrette for salads. The mango coconut pepper sauce is also delicious and the cabbage sat in the bowl and yelled at me to put some in it. So I did.

Shred a head of green cabbage. I shredded mine with some other stuff and put it in this neat little plastic bag all professionally labeled and everything. I had them keep it for me at the Harris Teeter in the pre-mixed salad case until I was ready for it. Ahem.

Put the cabbage in a large bowl. Chop a red bell pepper. Not green, for the love of god. A red one. Add about four chopped green onions. Not a red one, for the love of god. Green ones. I added a handful of chopped cilantro, but if you think it tastes like soap, you can leave it out. Add about 1/3 cup of fresh pineapple. Don't use the canned stuff - it's all mooshy. Add 1/3 cup of unsweetened coconut. Don't use sweetened - it makes it kind of cloying. Or so I was told by my husband when I didn't have unsweetened. I remember when you used to have to go to a health food or specialty store for unsweetened coconut, and now, Behold! they have it right there at the Teeter in the baking section next to the sweetened stuff. Right on! Toss all that together.  

In a small bowl, mix together 3 Tbs. of blood orange vinegar with a tablespoon of honey and a teaspoon of salt. Pour that over the cabbage mixture. Add 1/4 cup of the wonderful, miraculous mango coconut pepper sauce which really isn't hot at all, so if you want heat, you'll have to add some yourself. Add about 1/3 cup of mayonnaise. You could use plain yogurt too, and that would probably be OK. Mix that all together.

Serve with the blackened catfish and enjoy! If you'd like to blacken some fish and shred some cabbage, or just go to the grocery and buy the bagged stuff and mix all this in, here is the .pdf for the fish and here is the .pdf for the slaw.