Recipe courtesy of Eddie Russell
Show: Belly Up!
Episode: In a Pickle
Fried Catfish Sandwich
6 hr 30 min
30 min
2 servings
6 hr 30 min
30 min
2 servings


  • 2 catfish fillets
  • 4 cups buttermilk 
  • 2 cups cornmeal 
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne 
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed 
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper 
  • 2 kimmelweck or kaiser rolls 
  • 2 cups canola oil 
  • 1 cup store-bought coleslaw or homemade Celery Root Slaw, recipe follows
  • 8 slices store-bought or homemade Bread and Butter Pickles, recipe follows
Celery Root Slaw:
  • 4 large carrots, peeled
  • 1 large celery root, peeled
  • 2 large red onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup good quality store-bought mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon toasted caraway seeds
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Bread and Butter Pickles:
  • 6 cups thinly sliced cucumbers
  • 1 pound yellow onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup sea salt
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 2 cloves


Soak the fish in the buttermilk for at least 6 hours and up to overnight.

Season the cornmeal with the cayenne, celery seed and some salt and pepper. Toast the buns in the oven or a hot dry skillet.

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Remove the fish from the milk, and then dredge in the seasoned cornmeal, pressing down to ensure an even coating of breading. Shake off any excess cornmeal.

Pan-fry the fish until golden brown, turning once, about 2 minutes per side.

To assemble the sandwiches, place each piece of fish on a bun bottom. Top each with some slaw and 4 slices pickles, then finish with the top bun.

Enjoy the magic you just made.

Celery Root Slaw:

Using a food processor fitted with the grating attachment, shred the carrots and celery root to achieve slaw-like, julienned pieces.

Combine the carrots, celery, onions, mayonnaise, vinegar, caraway and sugar in a large non-reactive bowl. Mix well until fully incorporated, and then season with salt and pepper. Chill in refrigerator until cold, 1 hour.

Will keep in the fridge for 5 days, stored in an airtight container.

Bread and Butter Pickles:

Place the cucumbers and onions in a bowl and toss with the salt. Marinate the vegetables for 3 hours.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, combine the sugar, vinegar, celery seeds, turmeric, mustard seeds and cloves. Bring to a boil, then continue cooking for 5 minutes.

Rinse off the marinated vegetables in cold water, and then add to the infused vinegar. Bring the vinegar back to a boil and then remove from the heat.

Cool and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. Best if used within 2 weeks.



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