In a small bowl, combine the 2 tbsp of olive oil, juice of one lemon, 1 minced garlic clove, and 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley; refrigerate.
In a bowl, combine 1 cup flour, 2 tbsp cornmeal, 1 tsp salt, and ¼ tsp pepper.
Coat 1 lb smelt on both sides with the flour mixture. Heat the oil (about 1-inch deep) in a cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add fish, shaking off the excess flour. Fry both sides of the fish for 2-3 minutes each.
Serve hot, drizzled with the sauce.
Thaw your frozen smelt in the fridge.
If serving as an appetizer, aim for six to seven per person and twice that for the main course.
To clean smelt, gently pry open the head of the fish and slowly pull the gills along with the entrails. Rinse under cold water and pat dry.
Make sure not to crowd the fish. Fry in batches, if necessary.
Let the fried smelt drain its excess oil on a wire rack set over a baking sheet or line with paper towels.
If you prefer baking the smelt in the oven instead, you can do that too. Just make sure to grease your baking sheet well. Bake on 350 degrees F preheated oven for 10 minutes, flipping the fish over half-way through the baking.
For the best results, read additional tips in the post above.
Nutrition information is approximate and meant as a guideline only.