Fish Recipes

Catfish, wild, Protein-16.38%, Fat-2.82%, Water-80.36%
Catfish, farmed, Protein-15.23%, Fat-5.94%, Water-79.06%

Catfish live inland or in coastal waters all over the world. They have no scales but their skin is tough and hard to penetrate. Named for their prominent barbels, which resemble a cat’s whiskers, catfish range in size and weight. The average size of the species is about 3.9–5.2 ft (1.2–1.6 m). In North America large catfish can weigh well over 100 pounds, however, the record belong to Thailand giant Mekong catfish that weighed 650 lb (293 kg).


U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Mike Mangold with blue catfish at Dyke Marsh, Virginia.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Hot Smoked Catfish

Skin the fish and gut it. Cut the fish into 1 pound chunks.
Brine for 8 hours in 80º brine. (Add 2.2 lbs of salt to 1 gallon of water. This makes 80 degrees brine). Rinse and drain.
Air dry for 1 hour.
Apply a thin smoke at 100º F (38º C) for 2 hours.
Increase the temperature to 176º F (80º C) and smoke for 2 more hours.

Farm Raised Smoked Catfish Fillets

Brine fillets for 5 minutes in 80º brine. Wash and drain.
Dry fillets for 30 minutes in a preheated to 100° F (38° C) smokehouse.
Smoke for 60 minutes at 185° F (85° C).
Switch off the heat and smoke for 15 minutes more.

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