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Sadly, these aren’t my fishies.  Ooooh how I wish they were.  I had to cut off their heads to fit them in a 9×13 pan! The brave hunter who slayed these mighty Mackinaw was none other than Fireman Mikey (and a few of the other guys from the crew) with whom I have a standing agreement: if he catches enough fish to share with my and my sweetie I’ll cook them up and make us all a feast.

On tonight’s menu was blackened fillets and oven fries with a sour cream and herb dipping sauce.  It was so funny, of course the firemen loved the fish, but the thing that they both raved about was that I threw in some carrots with the oven fries.  I think it was the combination of the spicy fish, the naturally sweet carrots and the creamy dipping sauce.


Fireman Mikey has promised me that he’ll show me his fishing spot where he lands these awesome Mackinaw (for that matter, I promised to take him paddle-boarding too!), but it seems like we’re not going to have a day off in common in the foreseeable future.  Oh well, the time will come.

Simple Blackening Spice Rub

Makes enough for about 2-3 lbs of meat – you could use fish fillets, chicken cutlets or breasts, shrimp or even pork

  • 2 Tbs Cajun seasoning
  • 2 Tbs mild chili powder
  • 2 Tbs paprika
  • 1 Tbs dried thyme or 2 Tbs fresh thyme

You could easily increase or decrease the amount of blackening spice to suit however much meat you’re planning on cooking!  Just mix all the spices together and coat your fillets and pan fry!  Easy peasy, lemon-squeezy.


Look at that bountiful plate or blackened fish!

Sour cream Dipping Sauce

Makes about 1 cup – cost approx $1.37 per batch – since I got the fish for free, it was the most expensive part of my dinner!

  • 1/2 cup sour cream ($.25, pints go on sale for $1 all the time when it’s close to the expiration date.)
  • 1/2 cup mayo ($.12)
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest ($.50)
  • 2 Tbs whatever mustard you like best, I used dijon
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbs whatever fresh herbs you like best, I had scallions on hand this go around.  ($.25)

Just mix everything together and find something to dip in its wonderfulness!  I think the lemon compliments the blackened fish really nicely.