There is an art form to frying catfish. And any Southerner who knows good catfish also knows there are three crucial components: the slice, the soak, and the seasoning. If your filets are always curling on you, it’s because of the way it's sliced. Try to make your pieces an even thickness so thin ends don’t overcook before the centers are done. Don’t skip the soak. Leaving fish pieces to swim around in buttermilk beforehand neutralizes the “fishy” odor that comes with catfish while also removing any lingering muddy flavors. But the most essential element is seasoning your fry batter. This recipe has the perfect ratio of savory and spicy, which separates a “meh” catfish fry from a crowd-wowing one.