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FRIED SMELT FISH

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. package smelt (cleaned and dressed)
  • 2 C AP flour
  • 1/2 C rice flour
  • kosher salt/pepper
  • canola oil for frying
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As a child, I remember my Mother making Fried Smelt Fish every Christmas Eve for our Feast of the Seven Fishes meal. It was one of my favorites. Honestly, you either love them, or hate them. There is really no in between. Before you turn your nose up at them, give them a try. The flavor is very mild. They are nothing like a sardine, which smelt are often associated with. Better yet, they are fairly inexpensive.

This is one of the dishes you and your guests can devour right in the kitchen as you are preparing the meal. Although, the Fried Smelt Fish are best enjoyed immediately out the fryer, I eat them all throughout the evening!

Oh, the memories I have of how I used to help her in the kitchen to prep these little fish. Thanks goodness, you can now find them ready to prepare. Be sure to ask for the smelt to be “cleaned and dressed.” I can eat these like potato chips. Just one will never do. This is a super easy and quick recipe. I love that I can now carry on this tradition in my home and share with all of you. Local to Charlotte? The Carolina Meat & Fish Co. usually has smelt in stock, or can order them for you!

Me holding a tray of fried smelt fish

HOW TO PREPARE FRIED SMELT FISH

As mentioned above, most of the smelt you can buy today are fully cleaned and dressed. However, you should rinse the smelt and inspect. You just want to be sure the smelt have been fully cleaned. Salt the fish. Heat up the oil in a cast iron skillet or deep pot (you need just enough oil for a fry). In a bowl, add the all-purpose flour, rice flour (I love this one from Bob’s Red Mill), kosher salt and black pepper. Mix with a fork or whisk to combine. Add the smelt to the bowl and dredge each piece in the flour mixture. The water from rinsing will allow the flour to adhere to the fish.

Shake off excess flour. Add smelt to the hot oil. I prefer frying in batches. You do not want to crowd the pan, as it will affect the temperature of the oil. It should take about five to six minutes for the smelt to turn a golden brown. Transfer the Fried Smelt Fish to paper towels to drain off any excess oil. Salt immediately. Continue frying in batches. Serve immediately. ENJOY! Honestly, you really need no dipping sauce. However, you can serve with a side of tartar sauce, if you so desire.

LET’S GET SOCIAL!

I am more than just recipes. I love fashion and style too! Most importantly, I love my Family (my Hubby and my Fur Babies). My Husband (aka my “Kitchen Bitch”) means the world to me. He’s pretty damn cool too. Not only is he one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, he also has had a lengthy career in professional hockey. Not only winning two Stanley Cups with the Pittsburgh Penguins in the early ’90’s, but most recently winning the Calder Cup with the Charlotte Checkers, amongst many other accolades. If you live in Charlotte and play hockey, or have a family member who plays, be sure to contact him. He is known as one of the best skate sharpeners in the world!

Our life has changed dramatically in the past few years with the passing of our two goldendoodles, Vegas and Viva. We were lucky enough to have Vegas for five years (totally wish it was longer). Most recently, losing our Viva to a brain tumor in July of 2020. We welcomed our mini goldendoodle 7, almost seven years ago. We just added the amazing Hazel! Of course, I am always posting tons and tons of photos! Be sure to check out my recipe for Pet Bone Broth! This broth is super rich in nutrients and will provide your pet with a multitude of health benefits!

Be sure to follow me on social media! I’m always talking food, fashion, and family! I also love sharing some of my favorite Amazon Finds too. Click here to check out my Amazon page! FacebookInstagramTikTokTwitter and Pinterest!

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