Saturday, April 18, 2009

Favorite recipes: Great-grandma Lena's breaded walleye

My friend Dan requested more recipes, so I decided to share one that's been in my family for years. My great-grandma Lena used to make walleye this way several decades ago, and she taught my dad when he was fairly young. He in turn taught me, and now I will share the deliciousness with the world.

This recipe is quite basic, but it is the best way to prepare walleye, in my opinion. I've tried it with other mild flavored fish as well (orange roughy, pollock), and it works just as well. The best part is that you probably have all the ingredients at home already.

You will need:

  • Walleye filets (or other fish)
  • 3 eggs
  • Milk
  • Flour
  • Pepper
  • 1-2 tbsp butter (for frying)

First, cut your filets into smaller pieces (around 4 inches long and maybe 2 inches wide) and soak in a bowl of milk in the fridge. This is an important step as the milk, for some reason, neutralizes a lot of that fishy flavor. I let the fish sit like this for a few hours, or even overnight.

Next get two bowls to use for mixing the breading. In one bowl, mix 3 eggs and a half cup or milk. Put some flour in the 2nd bowl. Then you bread each small filet in this order: flour, milk/eggs, flour again. Be sure to pat the flour onto each filet to help pack the layer of breading. Let the filets sit a few minutes so the layer of breading sets. Note that the breading is thin (see photo below) and therefore this meal is a bit lighter and less greasy than many other fish recipes (which I like).

Now you're ready to cook the fish. I like to pan fry mine (medium heat) in real butter (not margarine). A tip: don't flip the filets until they are more than halfway done cooking. This will help prevent the pieces for crumbling and falling apart. When the bottom is looking golden brown, you can flip. It usually takes around 10 minutes to cook the filets (longer if they are bigger than what I mentioned above). Use a fork to cut one of the pieces in half to test whether or not it's done. You'll know the fish is fully cooked when it starts to flake.

Add a bit of pepper, and you're done! Delicious fish with easy-to-find ingredients. Enjoy, and don't tell my dad that I told you.

Photo used without permission from Theo's Cream City Chop Shop. Please don't sue me.


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