The Apple Doesn’t Fall Far from the Tree…and Fried Walleye

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Jun 19, 2011 at 8:40am

I first posted this last year, but the story and pics make me so happy, I’m pulling it up again for today. Happy Father’s Day! – Stephanie

I sent my dad an email telling him to check out my buttermilk pancake post and wishing him Happy Father’s Day.  This is what he wrote back:

I just got back from Canada last night.  We were fishing on Keefe Lake, which is in northern Saskatchewan, about 1,200 miles north of Sheridan.  We drove my pickup to Laronge and then flew the last 200 miles.  We had two shore lunches in the five days of fishing: The guide takes a large steel frying pan with high sides and fills it with canola oil, then sets it over an open camp fire.  When it’s very hot, he dumps in frozen french fries.  When the french fries are starting to brown, he drops in onion rings.  After two or three batches, he starts frying the fish.  The fish are walleye, caught that morning and cleaned while still flopping.  Each fillet is rolled in flour, then dipped in beaten egg, then rolled in potato buds, and then dropped into the very hot oil.  They are fried until they “look pretty”.  Meanwhile, canned baked beans are heating next to the fire.  Everyone grabs a plate and the feast is on while the guide continues to fry fish until everyone is stuffed.  All of this is best accompanied by cold beer.  Dessert is canned peaches with egg coffee.

I loved this email.  I laughed.  My mouth watered.

I thought of my Grandpa Meyer (my dad’s dad, who was a walleye fisherman extraordinaire, above).  I thought of my Grandma Meyer (who fried all that walleye – dredged in flour, fried in butter – until we all got full).

I got a tear in my eye.

I marveled that my dad drove 1,000 miles before his short flight.  (He lives in Sheridan, Wyoming.)  He, my stepmom Susanna, and my sister Stacey embrace a long drive.  I…do not.

I thought about how my dad is a true Renaissance Man: Lawyer, serious hunter/fisherman/outdoorsman/horseman, history expert, dog whisperer, nightmare debater, incredible cook, our family’s storyteller, father of four.

I thought about how much I love my family for loving real, good food.  I thought about how much I hope I’m passing this love on to my son.

And then I decided to fry up some walleye.  I’d never heard of dredging fish with potato buds before (see dredged in flour, fried in butter, above), so I decided to give the guide’s technique a try, since I assume the man knows how to fry up some fish.  It was completely delicious, a light as air crust around moist fish (similar in effect to panko crumbs).

All of this is best accompanied by cold beer. Yeah.

Shore Lunch Fried Walleye
Serves 4 (except in my family, where this would barely serve 2)

1 lb. walleye fillets
1 egg + 1 Tbsp. water
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 c. flour, on a plate
1 1/2 c. instant mashed potato flakes or panko crumbs, on a plate
peanut oil or other oil for high heat frying

Fill a wok 1/3 full of oil and set over medium high heat.  While oil heats, beat egg, 1 Tbsp. of water, and 1 tsp. of salt in a pie plate.  Line up the egg, flour, and potato flakes.  When oil is hot, dip both sides of walleye fillets in flour, then egg, then potato flakes, then transfer the fillet to the hot oil.  Fry fillet, turning once, until fish is nicely golden brown on both sides.  Drain on paper towels.  Repeat with other fillets and serve immediately.


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Older Comments

  1. By FreshTartSteph on June 24, 2011 at 8:36AM

    Thank you very much, really appreciate it. Right, I posted this first before I made the transition myself, but the amount used is quite small - a worthy treat. Hope you enjoy :)

  2. By Caveman Home Companion on June 24, 2011 at 8:08AM

    Your grandfather reminds me of mine. Great post! Even though potato buds aren't Paleo, I think I'm going to give this recipe a shot. It sounds wonderful!

  3. By SML on July 3, 2010 at 12:33PM

    Thanks Lauren! Made it again last night, good stuff. Easy too.

    Sarah - your brother's sauce sounds incredible, geez. Thx for sharing it. I hope you get a good ol' Minnesota walleye fix soon!

  4. By lauren on July 1, 2010 at 12:21PM

    Oh Yum, this looks delicious and I love your story too! I love using panko so I will have to give potato flakes a try too!

  5. By Sarah – A Beach Home Companion on July 1, 2010 at 12:08PM

    Ah yes, fried walleye. Outside of the Midwest not many people know about how delicious it is. It's one of the few things (along with the Grande Old Creamery and J's Restaurant) that I always make sure to get when I'm visiting my family in Minnesota. My brother makes a great pan-fried version with a sauce that is sauteed fennel, heavy cream and a dash of soy sauce. Sounds strange, but it's really good.

  6. By SML on June 28, 2010 at 6:40PM

    Thank you! It's hard to beat fried walleye. And grandpa stories :)

  7. By Sarah from 20somethingcupcakes on June 28, 2010 at 7:07AM

    What a beautiful story! My mouth is watering, too. xxSAS

  8. By FinnLover on June 27, 2010 at 10:54PM

    Oh, this looks fantastic! I will definitely give this recipe a try.

  9. By Megan Gordon on June 26, 2010 at 8:29AM

    Sweet, sweet post Steph. These are the "keeper recipes." Thanks for sharing, Steph! Your dad sounds pretty awesome.

  10. By Anonymous on June 26, 2010 at 7:15AM

    Aww sweetie. Fantastic.