|Mom's sister, Helen, helping out in the outdoor kitchen. It's so well appointed!|
We had a family car, that included the uncles as well. It was a '30's something wine colored Chevy sedan. That took us out of town, to church on rainy Sundays and was Uncle PM's courtin' car. Both the uncles did a lot of that. Uncle Biscuit couldn't drive, so was confined to walking to widow's homes or local ladies whose husbands happened to be busy elsewhere. The fishing and hunting vehicle was a black '20's something Essex. Uncle PM would "open her up" and let her "roll free" down the Fischer hill and on into Sandy Hook. The original "Dukes of Hazzard"!
We had a wonderful time.
On Monday, July 15, 2002, at 02:34 PM, Ann Blystone wrote:
Missouri Fish Fry
When Grandpa Jim and Grandma Mae were still living in California, MO, Granddady was always the fish fryer and he always either fried the fish on the screened-in porch or outside in the back yard. He had the neatest little grill - I remember it being about 2 feet tall and black. Now that my dad (and my brother Bill, and I) are the fish fryers, we use the gas burner on the side of our gas grill, and also always fry outside. I found a wonderful handled cast iron pot at a tag sale for 25¢ (!!) that works perfectly for the frying. Mom began the tradition of making a tempura-type batter to dip the fish in - and it's delicious!
For the fish batter:
1 part flour (~1 C.) +more to thicken batter if needed
1 part corn meal (~1 C.)
3 - 4 T. corn starch
salt, BumHot (or cayenne) and fresh ground black pepper to taste
about 3/4 of a 1 liter (33.8 oz.) bottle of seltzer water
Mix all together until you have a batter that flows easily off a spoon - not too thick. If it's too thin, mix in a little more flour, if not thin enough, add a little seltzer.
For my seester Carrie's tartar sauce:
~3/4 C. Hellman's mayonnaise
sweet pickles (bread & butter will do, or sweet gherkins), diced
celery (I think, says Care)
lime juice if you're going Caymanian
cider vinegar if you're going more American
For the fish fry:
fresh-caught fresh water fish fillets (use store-bought catfish and striped bass if you can't catch enough bass, crappy (Granddad's favorite), sunnies, bluegill or catfish)
1 - 2 large onions cut into 1/4" thick rings. Soak in water, then dry thoroughly before frying
oil for frying - any high-temp. neutral oil will do - so it's about 4" deep in a high-sided iron pot
Pour the oil into the pot and heat till a bit of batter dropped in it sizzles. Coat and fry fish - it's done when a fork stuck in it easily pulls back out. As it's done, place on a rack on top of a cookie sheet and put in a 250º oven. Fry the onion rings and as they're done, place on another rack on top of a cookie sheet.
Over the years, we've found that it's easiest to serve the fish and onion rings on the cookie sheets - not pretty, but practical.
I remember always having slaw with a mayo-based dressing with this, plus sliced tomatoes and cucumbers. It's one of my very favorite meals. WONDERFUL!!!