Summer is made for fish fry's in my opinion. Growing up, we never really ate a lot of seafood or fish - which is weird in my opinion - because we lived right on the coast! Both of my parents eat it, so I'm not really sure why we didn't have it more often? It wasn't until I was an adult that I really tried some different kinds of seafood besides "fish sticks". Laugh, but I know some of y'all were in the same boat! ;)
I remember this one time when I lived in the Midwest, I went to this popular local restaurant with some friends. It was known for their fried catfish. I decided that's what I was going to order ..... and low and behold, when the bring it out to me, um, it still looked like a dag-gone fish! It had a tail and bones and I wasn't really sure what to do! What do you think I did?! Yep, I ate the other stuff and kind of looked around to see what other people were doing with their fish. Once I had observed enough, I decided to dig in .... and I understood what all the hype was about! I did go back to that restaurant a few other times, but that first experience remains the most ingrained in my mind!
Personally, I prefer my fish without bones and a tail - but do whatever floats your boat. I ain't here to judge no one!
Combine the cornmeal, flour, salt, cayenne pepper and garlic powder. Coat the fish with the cornmeal mixture, shaking off excess. In a large, heavy skillet, fill it about half full with vegetable oil. Heat oil to 350°F. Add fish in a single layer and fry until golden brown, about 5-7 minutes - depending on the size. Remove the fish from the oil and drain on paper towels.