Crappie Casserole With Spinach Recipe

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Freshly caught crappie and a good helping of fresh spinach make this casserole a keeper.
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"Cooking Fish & Game: Delicious Recipes from Shore Lunches to Gourmet Dinners" is a collection of many decades’ worth of testing, tasting and retesting in order to bring you meals that are sure to satisfy and keep you motivated for the next game season.

Wild Game Recipes For Hunting Season

Spinach and Crappie Casserole

The best time to catch crappie is during their feeding time at sunrise or sunset. Crappie live in small- to medium-size lakes and congregate near weeds. One of the benefits of fishing for crappie is that once you find one, there are usually a lot more nearby. 

3 stalks celery
1 small onion
2 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoon butter, divided
1 1/2 cups chopped fresh spinach
1 can (7 ounces) mushrooms
1 1/2 pounds crappie or bluegill pieces
1 cup soft breadcrumbs, divided
2 eggs, beaten
Salt and pepper
Pinch dried dill weed
1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
Pinch paprika
Dash lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350 F. Chop celery and onion. Mince garlic. Place olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add celery, onion and garlic; sauté until tender. Add spinach, and continue to cook and stir until spinach wilts.

Drain mushrooms and add to skillet, stirring until heated through. Set aside and cover to keep warm.

Lightly grease 9-inch square glass baking dish. Place half the fish pieces in one layer across bottom of prepared dish. Spread 1/2 cup breadcrumbs over fish, and pour beaten eggs over breadcrumbs. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and dill weed. Spread sautéed vegetables over ingredients in baking dish and press down lightly.

Sprinkle feta cheese over vegetables. Create second layer with remaining fish pieces. Season with additional salt and pepper, and pinch of paprika. Sprinkle another 1/2 cup breadcrumbs on top. Melt remaining 3 tablespoons butter; drizzle butter and lemon juice over casserole. Cover baking dish with aluminum foil. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until fish is opaque.

To serve, remove baking dish from oven and cut casserole into squares. Yields 4 to 6 servings.

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