Southern Fried Catfish Recipe by Orelle C. Young, from The Blacksmith Smokehouse

About the Chef

Chef Orelle C. Young is Chef De Cuisine and Pitmaster at The Blacksmith Smokehouse, the city’s meatiest all-American smokehouse at the Wyndham Dubai Marina. A New York City native, Chef Orelle moved to Dubai in the autumn of 2017 to oversee the launch of The Blacksmith Smokehouse, which opened its doors in February 2018. Together with his loyal sidekick, Ol’ Betty, the restaurant’s infamous smoker, Chef Orelle’s legendary expertise in all-things barbecuing, cold smoking, grilling, braising, curing and dry-aging ensures the gastronomic authenticity of The First Group’s wholly-owned smokehouse concept, which celebrates the best traditions and flavors of the deep south.

When he’s not in the kitchen prepping meats, getting the best out of Ol’ Betty, or plotting the future expansion of The Blacksmith Smokehouse brand, Chef Orelle follows his favorite sports team, The New York Giants, and indulges in his passion for Musical Composition & Cinematography.


  1. 75g cornmeal (polenta)
  2. 25g bread crumb
  3. 10g coarse ground black pepper
  4. 5g salt (or as much to your liking)
  5. 20g paprika
  6. 10g garlic powder
  7. 10g onion powder


A traditional Southern Fried Catfish starts out with a well-seasoned breadcrumb, where in fact, breadcrumbs are maybe only 15-25% of the outside breading. Unlike the popular beer battered cod or haddock found in the UK, American fried fish takes a less cumbersome approach to the crispy and succulent entrée that we all love. It’s really as simple as mixing/seasoning your breading, coating the fish, and deep frying it in a pan/pot.

  1. In a bowl, mix cornmeal, bread crumb, coarse ground black pepper, salt, paprika, garlic powder and onion powder.
  2. For some heat, add some cayenne or your favourite chili powder to the mix.
  3. Pre-heat your corn or peanut oil to 175C, there should be enough oil to fully submerge your catfish.
  4. After you thoroughly bread your catfish fillet, lay your catfish down in the oil and fry for 5-7 minutes or until you reach an internal temperature of 75C.

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