Fried Catfish Fingers with Spicy Dipping Sauce
8 (6-ounce) catfish filets
2 cups white cornmeal
Salt and pepper to taste
Peanut oil for deep-frying
¾ cup white wine vinegar
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon parsley, finely chopped
Cut catfish filets into 1-inch wide strips and pat dry. Place cornmeal in a shallow dish and season with salt and pepper. Dredge catfish strips in cornmeal mixture, shaking off excess. Set aside on a wax-paper lined baking sheet.
Pour 2 inches of peanut oil into a deep fryer or large, heavy skillet and heat to 375 F. Add catfish strips to hot oil three at a time and fry in a single layer for 5 minutes, turning to cook evenly, until golden brown and fish flakes easily with a fork. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle lightly with additional salt.
Prepare dipping sauce 1 minute before serving catfish fingers. Mix all ingredients in a small bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings of necessary.