Mississippi Catfish Po’ Boy

By: The Local Palate
Photo courtesy of Saltine

“For me, the catfish po’ boy is king at Saltine. We fry filets of local catfish in a cornmeal crust until super crispy on the outside and flaky and yielding on the inside. It’s a combination of textures you can’t get with any of the other signature po’ boys.”- Chef Jesse Houston of Saltine in Jackson, Mississippi

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2 servings

  • 2-8 inch loaves New Orleans po’ boy bread (Chef Houston prefers bread from Leidenheimer’s)
  • 2 ounces butter, melted
  • 4 2-3 ounce Mississippi catfish filets (like Simmons catfish)
  • Seasoned flour (recipe follows)
  • Buttermilk wash (recipe follows)
  • Cornmeal dredge (recipe follows)
  • Canola oil for frying
  • Creole mayonnaise (recipe follows)
  • 1 cup shaved iceberg lettuce
  • 16 slices hamburger dill pickles
  • 4 slices of really good tomato (like Salad Days hydroponic tomatoes in Flora, Mississippi)
  • ¼ cup shaved red onion
  • Salt and pepper
  • Cornmeal Dredge
  • 2 cups cornstarch
  • 2 cups yellow cornmeal
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • Creole Mayonnaise
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup Creole mustard
  • 2 tablespoons yellow onion, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons green bell pepper, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons celery, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon Tabasco
  • Seasoned Flour
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1½ teaspoons onion powder
  • 1½ teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • Buttermilk Wash
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons Tabasco
  • ¼ cup dill pickle juice
  • 2 tablespoons Kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  1. Slice po’ boy bread down the middle lengthwise, creating four halves. Brush with melted butter. Heat skillet or grill to medium and toast until golden brown, about 3 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, toss catfish in seasoned flour and shake off any excess. Dip catfish in buttermilk wash, and then let any extra drip off before coating it in cornmeal dredge.
  3. In a fryer or thick pot, heat 1 inch canola oil to 350 degrees.
  4. Gently place fish in pot, and fry until cooked, approximately 5 minutes. Remove fish from pot, and place on paper towels.
  5. To assemble po’ boys, spread an even layer of Creole mayo on toasted bread, making sure to coat from end to end. Place two pieces of fried catfish on each bottom half, top with shredded lettuce, 2 slices of sliced tomato (seasoned with salt and pepper), 8 slices of hamburger dill pickles, tomatoe, shaved red onions, and then the dressed top half of loaf.

Cornmeal Dredge

Whisk to combine all ingredients in medium bowl.

Creole Mayonnaise

  1. Place all ingredients in medium bowl and mix to combine.
  2. Store in an air-tight container and refrigerate. Yields 2 cups.

Seasoned Flour

Whisk to combine all ingredients in medium bowl.

Buttermilk Wash

Pour all ingredients in medium bowl and whisk to combine.


  • From Chef Jesse Houston of Saltine Oyster Bar in Jackson, Mississippi

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