August is National Catfish Month

Family RV Gatherings Call for Fried Catfish!

August is National Catfish Month. Who knew? So I just had to share this old photo of my dad with his prize catfish caught on Lake Cherokee in East Texas.

Gerald Acker and Catfish

Gerald Acker caught this prize catfish on Lake Cherokee in East Texas. Probably in the 60s and probably on a trot line.

Some of my best family memories involve catfish fries with all the cousins hanging out by the lake. Usually, my dad and the uncles had caught the fish we ate, but these days, it’s easy to find fresh, U.S. farm-raised catfish at the store. (Beware of imported catfish! Just sayin’…)

Now, we can make new family memories at almost any lake, pulling our RVs and swapping stories and recipes. And while we mostly fix the traditional fried catfish in a cornmeal batter, I found a huge variety of recipes, from fried to blackened, on the U.S. catfish home page. Maybe it’s time to try something new!

Here’s a beer-batter recipe from NASCAR driver Ryan Newman.

Beer battered catfish

Photo from the U.S. Catfish website. Thank you!

1/2 cup unsifted all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon Everglade seasoning, optional
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves, crushed
3/4 cup room-temperature beer
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Vegetable oil
1 pound U.S. Farm-Raised Catfish fillets, cut into 3 to 4 inch wide strips

1. In a medium bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, Cajun seasoning, garlic powder, Everglades seasoning (if using), baking powder, paprika, white and red peppers and oregano.
2. If not using Everglade seasoning, add 1/2 teaspoon salt.
3. Whisk in beer and egg until smooth.
4. Cover and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
5. When ready to cook: In a deep skillet or large pan, pour vegetable oil to the depth of 3 inches; heat to 375°F.
6. Stir batter and fold in catfish. When oil is hot, lift fish strips with tongs, draining excess batter; place catfish in oil several pieces at a time (do not over crowd).
7. Fry until well browned on all sides, about 3 minutes. Remove to paper towels to drain. Keep warm, repeat with remaining catfish.

YIELD: About 24 pieces

(Original recipe by Jim Campbell of Griffin, Georgia)

What are some of your favorite recipes for family RV gatherings? If you have a great catfish recipe to share, we’d love to hear from you!

~ G. Elaine Acker

Camper Clinic II to Grant WISH for OUR HEROES to Texan

Question: What do the Texas Motor Speedway, Daytona, and the Indianapolis 500 have in common (okay, besides the obvious)?

Soldier and race car

Thanks to ML Motorsports and driver Johanna Long, W4OH will be showcased at about 195 MPH around Daytona’s track. SFC Tony Rives pictured with Johanna’s car.

Answer: A commitment to supporting our country’s military heroes through WISH for OUR HEROES!

Camper Clinic II is committed to granting a wish to a deserving Texas military hero as well, and you can help! All you need to do is click “like” on Camper Clinic II’s Facebook page, and we’ll add one more dollar to our Wish fund!

At WISH for OUR HEROES the top priority is to always grant basic needs or emergencies – anything from putting food on the table to assisting with car repairs, home repairs, baby supplies, clothing, etc. When basic needs are met, the organization also enjoys providing fun things like sending the troops to athletic events, sending them on vacation to get re-acquainted after deployments, meeting celebrities and more. It’s so important to share new, happy memories.

Camper Clinic II’s campaign ends Sunday, and there’s still time for you to make a difference! It’s like the Texas Two-step:

1)   Like Camper Clinic II on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/camperclinic2

2)   SPREAD THE WORD! Ask your friends and family to support our military families NOW.

We appreciate you helping us say thank you to the incredible men and women (and their families!) who make sacrifices every day for this country!

~G. Elaine Acker