Mom's Fried Fish Meal

Fish Fry Hooks Family

My mom, Margaret P. from Bloomington, Minnesota, never has to fish for compliments when she cooks—especially when we are on vacation.

Every year, our family spends a week at a lake in northern Minnesota. We've been doing this for 16 years. With my brother and four sisters as well as all our spouses and children, there are now 14 of us.

We all enjoy fishing because my dad taught us when we were young. So the finale of the week is, appropriately, a fish fry. Dad used to say Mom's Fried Fish was the finest he’d ever tried. Sadly, he is no longer with us, but we share fond memories of Dad all during our stay at the lake.

Once the fresh fish is cleaned, Mom dips it in an egg wash and rolls it in crushed crackers. My brother Jim cooks it outdoors in a deep fryer to a delicious golden brown.

Mom also prepares her tartar sauce and Parsley Red Potatoes. I help her by peeling and slicing the potatoes. She makes Crunchy Floret Salad the night before so the creamy dressing marinates the vegetables.

Mom's Apple Crisp rounds out this satisfying meal. The aroma of baking apples and cinnamon always brings everyone to her cabin. We like this dessert served warm, topped with mounded clouds of whipped cream.

All About Family

Family is so important to my mom. She did her best to have all eight of us at the dinner table every evening when we were growing up.

Each morning, after bringing my dad his cup of coffee and newspaper, Mom made a large breakfast for the eight of us, plus healthy lunches to take to school. Even our snacks were nutritious—usually fresh fruit instead of sweets.

After doing the housework and starting dinner, Mom went to work at a private athletic club. Her job paid for our straight teeth!

I share my mom's love of cooking and enjoy creating recipes for wild game. My husband, Mike, who's in sales, is an avid hunter and fisherman, as are our sons, Dustin and Christopher.

I have my own business, providing hair and nail care services for the elderly and handicapped. I also volunteer at a hospice and donate baked goods to local churches.

Mom has always looked out for other people, baking pies for priests or someone going through a hard time. She showed me how important it is to do these little acts of kindness.

She also writes poetry and has had many of her verses published. Here is one of her poems:

My Kitchen Prayer

Julie J. and Margaret P.

Whenever I cook I pray to God
To come and be my guide
In all I do till I am through
And filled with motherly pride.
I find it simply amazing
That all the world can pray

And yet He has the time to help
Each and every day.

Margaret P.

I'm in awe of how much my mom has done for us. I've told her many times that if I can be half the mother she has been, I'll consider myself a success. I hope you'll enjoy her fish-fry menu as much as we do!