Walleye Po'Boy with Smoked Asparagus

With Earth Day around the corner, we're thinking about sustainable seafood and local eating. Did you know there's a site that helps you choose sustainable fish to eat? Well there is - it's called Seafood Watch. For us here in Cleveland, a choice that's not only sustainable, but also local and in season is Walleye (lucky us). So we decided to fish one out of Lake Erie, smoke it, fry it, and serve it in a Po'Boy (not to be confused with a Polish Boy, which is native to CLE)          ...with some locally grown Spring asparagus.

Makes 4

- Ingredients -

1 lb Walleye
1 tablespoon homemade Old Bay

one bunch asparagus
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon homemade Old Bay

Homemade Old Bay Seasoning
10 bay leaves, ground
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon cayenne
¼ teaspoon mace

1 egg, whisked together
½ cup flour
¼ cup cornmeal
1 tablespoon homemade Old Bay
½ teaspoon black pepper

Creole Remoulade
8 oz mayonnaise
¼ cup fresh Italian parsley leaves
4 cloves garlic, smashed
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon lemon juice from ½ lemon
¼ teaspoon dry mustard

¼ cup olive oil, for frying

baguette or sandwich buns
arugula/mixed greens
½ lemon, sliced into wedges for garnishing

- Tools -
Weston Smoker
wood chips
Weston Kitchen Mixer
large skillet

Smoke Walleye
Preheat your Smoker to 200°F. Soak your wood chips for 30 minutes and fill the smoker water bowl.

Once the wood chips are soaked and the smoker is preheated, sprinkle the Walleye with Old Bay. Place the Walleye into the smoker and smoke at 200°F under heavy smoke until the internal temp of the fish is at 145°. Reduce the temperature of the smoker to 150°-160° once the fish has reached a safe temperature. Smoke for a total of 2 hours.

The key to smoking this walleye is to keep the temperature down so that it's not overcooked (you'll be frying it after smoking) - while also keeping the fish safe to eat. Under 140 is a danger zone, so you'll want to bring the fish to 145 rapidly, then hold the fish right around that temp.

Smoke Asparagus
While the Walleye will smoke for 2 hours, the asparagus only needs 45 minutes. Toss the asparagus in olive oil, lay it over foil, and sprinkle with Old Bay. Place into the smoker after the Walleye has been in for an hour and 15 minutes.

Prepare Creole Remoulade
While the Walleye and asparagus smoke, prepare the remoulade by roughly chopping  the parsley and garlic in your Kitchen Kit. Pour in remaining ingredients and continue to chop until well blended. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Bread Walleye
Once the Walleye and asparagus are finished smoking, wrap the asparagus in foil tightly to keep it hot. Place the whisked egg into one bowl. Mix together the cornmeal, flour, pepper, and Old Bay in a separate bowl. Gently slice the walleye into smaller fillets (to fit into your sandwiches). Next, gently dip each fillet into the egg to coat well. Toss the coated fillet in the breading mix to completely coat.

Fry Walleye
In a large skillet over medium high heat, pour in ¼ cup olive oil. Once the oil is hot, drop in the breaded fillets. Fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes on each side.

Serve the fillets on baguette over a bed of greens, smothered in Creole Remoulade. Serve the asparagus on the side - also smothered in Creole Remoulade. Garnish with a lemon.

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