Plated or Poured: Hush Puppies with Low Country Sauce

As a black man growing up in North Carolina my first experiences with dinner parties came in the form of a fish-fry. Think of it as a southern shindig always outdoors featuring fried food, beer and good vibes. The star of the party was always a 30 gallon black pot where hot peanut oil would transform fresh fish such as croaker or spot into golden crisp glory. But the fried fish was never served alone. Cornbread batter fried instead of baked is what we call a Hush Puppy and it always accompanied the fish. Fried in the same oil as the fish, these round shape cake-like sides were always my favorite because I was too young to navigate all the bones in the fish ( always preferred because it was usually cheaper than filets). Here is my take on the southern staple.
Ingredients

Low Country Sauce:

1 stalk of celery finely diced

1 Tbsp worcestershire sauce

2 Tbsp whole grain mustard

2 Tsp capers chopped

1 Green onion finely sliced

1 Cup mayonnaise

1 Tbsp ketchup

1 Tsp garlic powder

1 Tsp paprika

2 Tsp lemon juice

1/4 Cup fresh parsley (chopped)

Salt/Pepper to taste

Hush Puppies:

1 Medium yellow onion (grated)

1 Green onion (finely sliced)

1 Jalapeño (finely diced)

1 garlic clove (minced)

1 Tsp smoked paprika

1 1⁄2 cups cornmeal

1 1⁄2 cups All-Purpose flour

1/4 Cup granulated sugar

1/2 Tsp baking soda

2 Eggs

1/4 Cup vegetable oil

1 cup buttermilk

1/4 sour cream

1/2 cup sweet corn kernels

Peanut Oil for Frying 

Salt to taste


Instructions

Low Country Sauce:

To a bowl, add celery, capers, green onion, mayo, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, whole grain mustard, garlic powder, paprika, lemon juice and fresh parsley. Mix and refrigerate. 

Hush Puppies:

Add oil to a pan, followed by grated yellow onion, sliced green onion, minced garlic and diced jalapeno. Next add smoked paprika and cook for 5-6 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and keep it aside.

To a deep pan, add peanut oil, heated to 325 degrees (F). Next add cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Mix well. Add eggs, a little vegetable oil, buttermilk and the cooked ingredients to the dry mixture. Mix well. Using an ice cream scoop, take dollops of the mixture and place them in the hot oil. Cook each batch for 5-6 minutes. Drain them on paper towel.

Place a hush puppy atop a dollop of low country sauce.

Enjoy!

‘Plated or Poured’ is our food and drink column curated by Rashad Frazier, a prolific home cook who hails from North Carolina and currently lives in NYC. When it comes to food and drink, he stands for everything good and righteous. You can keep up with his culinary exploits and so much more on his food and lifestyle blog, PULLEDTOGETHER.
Follow Rashad’s journey on Instagram.