Bluegill Poor Boy

I am from Minnesota and the intent of this blog is to write about the foods that I hunt, fish and gather. I noticed that I don't write about fish very often. Part of the reason for that is that I don't catch much fish and when I do I usually fry it and you can only write so many posts about fried fish. One of my goals this year is to try and put at least one fish related post up every month. In order to do that I am going to have to expand my fish cooking repertoire. I am also going to have to spend some more time fishing and try to catch some different kinds of fish. Maybe I will get some time off this year and actually get up north and catch my first sturgeon that would be a shit ton of fun. It might also be putting the cart before the horse. After all I still have some walleye and some bluegills and crappies left in the freezer from last year. 

If the world were a perfect place Minnesota would be located near an ocean and I would be able to go out and catch all kinds of shrimp and crab and lobsters as well as salt water fish like cod and mackerel. Unfortunately Minnesota is a completely fresh water state so I will have to make due with what we have here, which is plenty. I just need to broaden my cooking skills a little. In the past couple of months I have made a couple of fish dishes that turned out amazing, my crappie spring rolls and butter basted walleye were a hit with everyone in my family especially my two year old Charlie. He ate 3 spring rolls all by himself.
This month I was looking at the fish I had in the freezer and trying to figure out something new that I haven't done before and figured why not mix something new with something old. I am pretty good a frying fish so why not make a fish sandwich, better yet why not make a fried fish poor boy. I have eaten many different poor boy sandwiches in my life and several have included seafood. I had an incredible shrimp poor boy at a place called Landry's in New Orleans and a fried oyster poor boy in Hattiesburg, MS that made the trip to Mississippi almost bearable. So why not make a poor boy with some bluegills I had caught.
It is really a very simple sandwich to make, find a nice french bread some remoulade shredded lettuce and sliced tomato and add some fried fish. For this sandwich I soaked my fish fillets in a buttermilk mixture for about 2 hours and then breaded them in equal parts flour and bread crumbs. I really want to get a nice crispy breading on the fish with out being gritty. I always feel when I use corn meal my breading it to gritty. I seasoned my breading and the buttermilk mixture with Tony Chachere's creole seasoning. My remoulade is a recipe from Emeril Lagasse and it is the best remoulade I have ever had so I don't even mess with it. My sandwich was amazing the fish was crunchy and the bread was chewy and the freshness of the lettuce and tomato balanced each bite. If your looking for a new way to cook your fish I highly recommend it.

Fried Bluegill Poor Boy

1 pound bluegill fillets

1 cup buttermilk
1 egg
1 tsp hot sauce ( I use Crystal hot sauce)
Tony Chachere's Creole seasoning

For the breading

1/2 cup All purpose four
1/2 cup bread crumbs, unseasoned
Tony Chachere's Creole seasoning

Oil for frying
shredded lettuce
sliced tomato
french bread
Remoulade sauce or if you prefer you can use mayo or tartar sauce

1. Mix the buttermilk, egg, hot sauce and some creole seasoning in a bowl and soak the fillets in the mixture for 30 minutes or so.

2. combine the ingredients for the breading  and then dredge the fillets in the breading and place into  350 degree oil and fry until golden brown.

3. to assemble your poor boy lay a bed of lettuce on the bread stach your fish fillets top with tomato and remoulade.