Catfish with Crispy Kale and Cajun Sauce

Total Time:
1 hr 25 min
Prep:
50 min
Cook:
35 min

Yield:
4 to 6 servings
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • Creamy Grits:
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 cup instant grits
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • Cajun Sauce:
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon seafood seasoning, such as Seafood Magic
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Catfish:
  • 4 to 6 catfish fillets (6 to 7 ounces each)
  • 1/4 cup Cajun spice
  • 6 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Crispy Kale:
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 2 bunches kale, leaves cut into julienne, stems discarded
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Directions
  • For the creamy grits: Heat the heavy cream and chicken stock to a simmer in a saucepot. Rain in the grits and cook, whisking frequently, for 5 to 6 minutes. Fold in the butter, cream cheese and Parmesan and season with salt and white pepper. Top with the milk and reserve (the milk will prevent a skin from forming). Fold in the milk just before serving.

  • For the Cajun sauce: In a nonreactive saucepot, reduce the wine over medium heat until almost dry. Add the chicken stock, cream, Worcestershire, shallots and lemon juice and reduce slightly. Add the paprika, seafood seasoning and thyme and simmer until the sauce coats the back of a spoon, 5 to 6 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer and whisk in the butter. Season with salt and black pepper.

  • For the catfish: Heat a saute pan to medium heat. Dust the catfish with the Cajun spice on both sides. Add the grapeseed oil and catfish to the pan and cook until done, 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Transfer to a plate and top with the butter, making sure it melts completely. Reserve.

  • For the crispy kale: Heat a saute pan to medium heat and add the grapeseed oil. Add the garlic and onions and sweat until the vegetables are translucent. Add the kale and saute until wilted, about 2 minutes. Stir in the chicken stock. Remove from the heat and fold in the butter. Season with salt and black pepper.

  • To serve: Spoon some Cajun sauce in the center of each plate. Spoon some creamy grits on top of the sauce. Add the kale, followed by the catfish.


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