This recipe puts a southern twist on fish tacos. While southern style catfish is often served battered in cornmeal and fried, I opt to pan-fry it and serve it blackened instead. Catfish is a versatile whitefish with dense meat and a mild, sweet flavor. If you are unable to find catfish you can substitute another whitefish such as tilapia or rockfish instead. In this recipe the catfish is served on flour tortillas with shredded cabbage topped with pan-fried corn and Old Bay® aioli.



For the blackened catfish:

2 teaspoons paprika

½ teaspoon garlic powder

½ teaspoon dried oregano

½ teaspoon dried thyme

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 pound catfish filets, cut into 6 pieces

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil


For the fried corn:

3 slices bacon, sliced into ½” pieces

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 ears of corn, husked and cut off the cob

½ teaspoon granulated sugar

2 tablespoons heavy cream

2 tablespoons diced jalapeño

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper


For the old bay aioli:

½ cup mayonnaise

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 teaspoons Old Bay® seasoning

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


For serving:

6 (6-inch) flour tortillas, warmed

3 cups shredded purple and green cabbage

lemon wedges



For the blackened catfish:

In a small bowl stir together the paprika, garlic powder, oregano, thyme, cayenne pepper, kosher salt and black pepper. Generously season the catfish pieces on both sides.

Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat, add the olive oil and heat through. Add the catfish and cook until dark on both sides and cooked through, about 4 minutes each side. Remove to a plate and set aside.


For the fried corn:

Heat a medium cast iron skillet over medium heat add the bacon and cook until the fat has rendered and the bacon is crispy. Remove the bacon to a paper towel lined plate using a slotted spoon. Return the pan to the heat and add the butter, allowing to melt. Toss the corn in sugar then add to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally until the corn is soft and some pieces are golden brown. Add the cream and stir to combine, cooking until the cream thickens, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and the jalapeño and the bacon back to the pan, stirring to combine. Season with salt and pepper then top with the parsley.


For the old bay aioli:

In a small bowl whisk the mayonnaise, garlic, Old bay seasoning, pepper and 1 tablespoon of water together until completely combined.


For serving:

Divide the cabbage among the tortillas and top with the catfish pieces. Top with the fried corn and old bay aioli. Serve immediately with lemon wedges on the side.


Serves 3 to 4. 

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