TODAY Show: Easy Recipes for Busy Families
Chef Jennifer Hill Booker is joining TODAY to share a few of her favorite childhood recipes that helped inspire her new children's book "Jelly Fries a Fish for Dinner." To carry on her time-honored family traditions, she shows us how to make deep-fried Mississippi-style catfish, pickled summer vegetables and creamy cabbage coleslaw.
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My earliest memories of fried catfish were at our annual family reunion. Every year, my family would all meet up with all our relatives in Charleston, Mississippi, to celebrate my Big Mama's birthday. The celebration was kicked off the Friday before Labor Day with a huge fish fry. Big cast-iron pots full of bubbling hot lard would be filled with catfish, brim, perch, buffalo and french fries. We would eat the piping hot fish on slices of white bread with hot pepper sauce and mustard.
For me, coleslaw is the perfect complement to a piece of fried fish. I love the sweet and tangy bite of the dressing and how fresh the cabbage makes this salad taste. Garden pickles are another dish I enjoy with hot fried catfish. I love this recipe because it allows me to use whatever garden vegetables are ripe at the time. Plus, I get to enjoy them all year long and bring a bit of summer to those cold winter months.