Weekend Fish Fry
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One of our favorite ways to celebrate summer is to host a Weekend Fish Fry for our family. So, when our freezer has an abundance of freshly caught and frozen fish, it’s time to start planning. Below are some of our favorite recipes for preparing fish as well as salads and sides to go with it.
When my husband and I were first married, we went fishing often in the spring, before the ticks and chiggers became too much of a bother. I loved to fish in my grandma’s pond, where we were almost guaranteed to catch a nice-sized bass. Of course, as our family grew, our daughters joined us on our outings. At that point, my husband spent more time untangling fishing line and bating hooks than fishing.
These days, we mostly get our fresh fish from my husband’s uncle who is retired and does a LOT of fishing. He supplies us with all the fish we can eat. And we always enjoy the bounty he brings.
If you don’t have a fisherman in your family, no worries. You may easily substitute frozen fish from the grocery store, such as farm-raised catfish, tilapia, halibut, or cod.
Frying Tip – Outdoor Burners
Do you own an Outdoor Propane Burner? If so, I recommend using it when preparing a large amount of fried foods. Not only will it hold a frying temperature better than a range top, it will keep your kitchen free for preparing the sides. Plus it will ward off extra heat in the kitchen, which is especially helpful in the summer months when temperatures climb into the triple digits! This would also be an excellent option for a Summer Shrimp Boil!
We Begin with Fish
I like to prepare Fried Catfish in larger pieces cooked in a cast iron skillet. This is especially fun when planning a fish fry so that you have lots of variety.
This Beer-Battered Fried Fish recipe is perfect for a weekend fish fry. Use it with your favorite fish, whether bass, catfish, crappie, or walleye. Cornmeal and simple seasonings gives it a crispy, flavorful crust to compliment the tender, freshwater fish.
What to Serve with Fish – Appetizers Sides and Salads
Much like a Shrimp Boil, a Fish Fry requires some must-have appetizers, sides, and salads. Sure, you can stray from this list if you want, but here are our favorite dishes to serve alongside your platter of fish.
A Few Appetizers
Fried Okra Bites are great for summer. Serve a batch or two at your next fish fry, shrimp boil, or barbecue. Small pieces of okra that have a crispy cornmeal coating laced with seasoned salt and garlic. So good!
Every summer I go on the hunt for ways to use zucchini. Even though I don’t have a garden anymore, I know lots of people who do, and I am always happy to take fresh produce off of their hands! These Zucchini Fritters with Ranch Dip are a great way to use fresh zucchini.
Try this recipe for Hush Puppies the next time you serve fish or have a shrimp boil. Crispy on the outside with a tender and seasoned center. They’re quite scrumptious.
Nice Cold Salads
My grandma was a wonderful cook, and Grandma’s Coleslaw was always a favorite at our family gatherings. It still is. Grandma dubbed this recipe as the coleslaw from Kentucky Fried Chicken.
Crunchy Broccoli Salad is the perfect dish to take to your next potluck dinner or family gathering. It’s easy, full of flavor, and people devour it. Broccoli Slaw, Carrots, Radishes, Golden Raisins, Sunflower Seeds, and the main attraction–Ramen Noodles.
Garden Cucumber Tomato Salad is perfect for a hot summer evening and also a summer fish fry. It is a wonderful way to use up your fresh garden vegetables. And what a delicious way to enjoy them!
Side Dishes Perfect with Fish
Macaroni and Cheese is a perfect accompaniment for a fish fry. But this Cheesy Corn and Macaroni Casserole is even better. Our family loves this dish.
Cheesy Squash Bake is perfect when you have a lot of squash in your garden. The squash is baked until tender with onion, green peppers, and garlic, and is then topped with a seasoned cracker crumb and melted cheese.
Fresh Garden Creamed Peas is another great option. Sweet tender peas in a creamy base with lots of butter melting on top.
Fish and Potatoes go well together. Try frying chips or fries, or make these Pan Fried Country Potatoes. Crispy, tender potatoes, seasoned just right with onion, bell pepper, and salt and pepper.
Most people think of frozen desserts for summer, which is always good. But fruit pies and cobblers are perfect for a summer gathering as they don’t melt and they can withstand the heat. Here are a few of our favorite fruit desserts to enjoy with your Fish Fry.
No need for a pie plate. Just lay the pastry dough on a baking sheet and spoon the fruit mixture on top. Plus, a slab pie bakes faster than a traditional pie, so that makes this Blueberry Peach Slab Pie perfect for summer desserts!
I like to use fresh peaches when in season, and my favorites are from Colorado. This Fresh Peach Cobbler recipe is a family favorite.
Homemade Cherry Pie is so delicious when using fresh cherries.
Fresh Tart Rhubarb Pie is another great choice for a summer dessert. Be sure to buy or harvest it in bulk when it is in season and freeze it for later in the year!