Now when we say blackened, we don't actually mean black. That would mean your catfish is charred, and not necessarily in a good way. Rather, when hot fat meets dry spices, they burn slightly, or "blacken," giving you a great, crisp sear and releasing all the oils from the spices right into the fish. Best of all, this technique is so easy you won't even need a "burner" filet.
- 2 catfish filets (about 1 pound)
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- lemon slices or wedges, to garnish
- Mix together spices and herbs in a shallow dish.
- Rinse catfish filets under cold water, then pat dry with paper towels.
- Place each filet in the seasoning dish and use your fingers to coat thoroughly with the spice mixture.
- Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet (cast-iron works best) over medium-high heat.
- Open a window, because you may get a little smoke. This means the blackening process is working.
- Fry the filets on each side for 3-4 minutes, then remove from pan and serve immediately with your favorite Southern sides and lemon wedges or rounds.