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Arc, Wynee, Forrest City & Brinkley
fries. They’re as much a part of Arkansas as church potlucks and
backyard BBQ’s. No matter what kind of fish we’re eating -
bluegills, crappie, bass, catfish, walleye or others - we like it
best when it’s deep fried, served up crispy and hot with
hushpuppies, coleslaw, thick sliced onion and home-made pickles on
the side. Most times we opt for a simple batter recipe, usually
some cornmeal with salt and pepper, but Arkansas cooks like
experimenting with new recipes as well, adding different spices,
seasonings and other ingredients to produce new taste sensations
that keep our guests coming back for more. Here are two taste
tempters that show the variety of ideas that can be used. Use
with any of your favorite fish, filleted or pan-dressed.
1 c. Bisquick
1 egg white
in a bowl, then slowly pour in club soda, stirring with a fork
until the mixture has a consistency of very heavy cream. Fold in
egg white. Dredge fish in the extra flour, dip in batter than
deep fry until golden brown.
1 c. Bisquick
1 t. dried dill weed
½ t. onion powder
½ t. garlic powder
½ t. salt
½ t. pepper
2 c. lemon-lime soda
2 eggs, slightly beaten
In a large
mixing bowl, combine dill weed, onion and garlic powder, salt and
pepper. Add soda and eggs, and mix well. Dredge fish fillets in
the extra Bisquick, then immerse in the prepared batter.
Refrigerate fillets in the batter for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove
fillets from the batter one at a time, allowing excess batter to
drip off. Deep fry until golden brown, and serve hot.
BARNETT OFFERS CHANCE AT BIG BASS
A lake on a
bayou in a canyon is unique in itself. Toss in stories of 12
pound largemouth bass, 11-pound largemouth bass, “lots” of 8-pound
largemouth bass, and you get the attention of numerous Arkansas
fishermen. At 245 acres, it is small but not tiny, Lake Barnett
is in western White County near the Floyd community. When James
Modlin of Floyd landed one largemouth a bit over 12 pounds and
another a tad over 11 pounds this spring, fishermen took notice.
But, a word of caution is appropriate. Barnett is not a place
where you can run out, toss a lure and grab a lunker. It can be
difficult to fish, especially for first timers. Abundant stickups
in many parts of the lake are deceptive. They are just a short
cast away from water approaching 100 feet deep. Bayou Des Arc
rises in the hills close to Romance and snakes its way to the
White River in Prairie County near Des Arc. Its early course is
deep through steep wooded hills. This is where the bayou was
dammed in a multi-partner project with two purposes – flood
control and recreational fishing. The lake is managed by the
Arkansas Game and Fish Commission and it’s fished for bass, bream,
crappie and catfish. Barnett’s fishing rules are the same as
statewide regulations except there is a 13 to 16 inch protected
slot limit on largemouth bass. Modlin gave a clue to Barnett’s
current fishing success. “This lake has abundant shad. The fish
I caught had been schooling and chasing shad in anywhere from 3 to
15 feet of water.” He said he caught the big fish on a
clown-colored Smithwick suspending Rogue. That’s a stock bait
that takes some knowledge and skill to work efficiently. Barnett
is narrow and deep in spite of being on a bayou. A bridge carries
the county Gravel Hill Road over the lake, which divides its upper
and lower sections. In the spring, Modlin said anglers head up
past the bridge for much of the action. Lake Barnett was named
for Eldon Barnett of Floyd, a leader in the long campaign leading
up to the birth of the lake. Barnett has two access areas with
boat ramps, both on the south side and reached off Arkansas
Highway 31. Barnett Access is near the Center Hill Road and
bridge. Reed Access is about a mile downstream and off Washburn
Road. A small private campground on Highway 31 has recreational
vehicle facilities, and bait and other supplies are available in
Floyd, which is about 10 miles from U. S. Highway 67 at Beebe.
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