Thursday, June 18, 2009

Catfish Fry

Catfish Fry
Not for purist, obscene content.

If yer a kid at heart then some times ya still go fishin. I’ve always wanted to catch a catfish on the John Day River but have never had chicken gizzards, treble hooks, or split shots in my fly box. When camp has been set up and ya have nothin better to do; heck, why not break the catfish code. Well; ya start by lookin through a fly box full of poppers, damsels, and whooly buggers because yer on the river catchen bass not thinkin of fryin up a catfish. Ya figure, take a couple wooly buggers spaceem apart for weight and look through a cooler to find the smelliest meat. Well, yer not a bait fisherman but’ve used a few worms in yer childhood years, but bacon sure sounds good to a catfisherman. So ya cut a slab of bacon, fold it up and push it through the hook. Then it’s time to chug a PBR, row across the river and anchor up in a little back eddy.

After a couple casts and feeding line to the bottom of the river ya hook a few bass. Ya think, “bass must taste good to a bottom feeding cat fish.” Ya sacrifice the next bass caught, slice off a chunk, find a #6 Gamakatsu hook in yer tackle box, tie it on with nothin less then a perfection knot, and fling out the line give’in the catfish another chance. The line swirls around in the back eddy, more green line gets sucked into the currant. Ya reel in and make one more attempt at casting this heathenistic set-up of wooly buggers and bait. The bait lands in the foam line, on the outer edge of the eddy. The line gets sucked down an’ya feel the bass bouncing off the bottom and then the line comes tight and the reel starts spinning. Yahoo, fish on! The fish feels like a Spring Chinook on a 6 weight. Rod tip bent, line running out, ya reel in and it takes more line. Can’t be a bass, bass rise to the surface and cartwheel a few times. After a few minutes of playing the fish, ya get it to the bank and see long whiskers protruding from the face, and a big, wide mouth like Aunt Jemima ready to give ya a big smack on the lips.

Blackened catfish by the river is a treat. Ya sacrifice two cats and let one go, no need to take more then ya need. Ya row back to camp, fillet the two cat fish, dippem in egg. Next, ya coatem with flour, mixed with paprika, chili powder, and garlic salt. Ya wait for the oil to get hot then plunkem in the pan. The spices tingle yer nose hairs and yer mouth waters. Ya wait till they’re golden brown then slidem to a plate and squeeze fresh lime over the cooked flaky fillet. The meat falls apart between yer fingers, so ya lick yer lips and fingers while thinkin about that next catfishin you’ll be doin.

This ain't chicken.

Catfish Fry.