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River Catfish with Fiddleheads and Potatoes

River Catfish with Fiddleheads and Potatoes
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by in May 2004

Total Time: 30

Yield: 4 servings

If you don’t have fiddleheads on hand, substitute asparagus that has been stemmed and cut into 1-inch pieces.


  • 1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons cooking oil, divided
  • 2 cups fiddleheads, cleaned and rinsed thoroughly
  • 4 catfish filets (5 to 6 ounces each)
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Toss potatoes and carrots with garlic, coriander, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and 1 tablespoon of the cooking oil. Spread on a baking sheet and bake 1 hour, turning occasionally, until brown at the edges.

Meanwhile, bring a pot full of salted water to a boil. Add fiddleheads and cook until just tender, about 2 minutes. Remove with a strainer and immediately plunge into ice melts to stop cooking. Drain and set aside.

Rub the catfish on both sides with remaining salt, pepper, oil, and wine. Place in a baking dish with the wine. Turn oven to broil and place fish under broiler, about 2 inches from the heat. Broil about 8 minutes, or until fish is cooked through and springy to the touch.

While the fish is cooking, toss fiddleheads with olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, until warmed through. To serve, remove carrots and potatoes from the oven and apportion among four plates or shallow bowls. Place a piece of fish atop each potato-carrot mixture and scatter fiddleheads all around the side of each plate. Drizzle the hot juices from the baking dish over each plate, and serve immediately.

Updated Tuesday, April 27th, 2004
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