If you didn't grow up around the great lakes, you may not be familiar with the fabulous fish know as the "walleye." It's so highly regarded around Lake Erie that the locals honor it with an annual "Walleye Drop" every New Year's Eve. (By the way, neither of the fish that my children are holding are actually walleye.) In case you are wondering what a walleye looks like, this is a walleye pillow that we actually have in our house - please don't ask me why.
Walleye can be quite elusive and hard to catch but if you manage to get one, you're in for a real treat. During our vacation at the lake this summer, Ben, my dad and my son all caught walleye and we completely forgot to take a picture of them. (Sorry)
I did, however get a picture of the fish cleaning.
Once the walleye were fileted, my mom packed it up in Ziploc bags and put it in the freezer. When we got ready to leave the lake to come home, we put our frozen walleye filets in a cooler to transport them back to Georgia. They were about halfway defrosted after our 14 hour trip south so I put them in the refrigerator overnight.
Ben and the kids were looking forward to fried walleye filets and I was more excited about a baked version - so I made both.
Directions for Fried Walleye
Pat the filets dry with paper towels. Sprinkle with salt.
Prepare 3 bowls for breading. One with flour, one with a beaten egg and another with panko bread crumbs.
Dip each filet into flour.
Dip in beaten egg.
Coat with panko bread crumbs.
Pour canola oil into the bottom of a non stick skillet and heat to simmering. Add filets and cook ntil browned on bottom.
Turn and finish cooking until flaky inside.
I served the walleye with roasted sweet potato wedges and a yeast roll. When I started to take pictures of the plate, I realized that the entire meal was the same color - usually something that I try and avoid. Regardless of the monochromatic color scheme - it was delicious.
Directions for Baked Walleye
Pour a small amount of salsa into a baking dish. Place salted fish on top and bake at 400 until light and flaky.
To serve this fish, I like to move the filet to my dinner plate and then spoon the salsa on top of the fish.
This recipe works with just about any kind of fish and any kind of salsa. It's super simple and really good - especially with freshly caught walleye from Lake Erie.