So, I have to admit that several years ago when someone told me they had fish tacos at a local restaurant it made my stomach roll. For some reason I just could not picture a fish taco. The problem was that I was trying to picture a traditional taco with fish instead of meat. Once I got a grip on the concept, I was willing to venture out of my comfort zone and give this whole fish taco thing a try. I’m so glad I did! It’s not at all like a traditional taco. It resembles a taco because of how it’s presented but what’s inside is wonderfully different. Fresh and fragrant with so many different layers of flavor. There are many ways you can make them and be adventurous with your ingredients. I suppose the number one goal would consist of three things…fresh, flavorful, and fabulous. Fabulous to me means distinct flavors and textures that make you happier with each bite. Fresh tomatoes, lime, juicy slaw, possibly a spicy pico de gallo, a perfectly fried corn tortilla and of course, moist and tender pieces of seasoned fish. You can add mango, shrimp, cilantro…change it up any way you like with your favorite ingredients.
6 Cod Fillets, or your favorite lighter flavored fish
Olive Oil, I used garlic olive oil and drizzled the fish skillet with about 4 Tbsp.
Canola Oil, about 2 cups
Sea Salt & Pepper
For The Pico de Gallo
5 Medium Vine Tomatoes, diced small with juice and seeds
1/2 Yellow Bell Pepper, diced (traditional Pico does not contain bell pepper, but I like the color and the texture)
1/2 Red Onion, diced
About 1/2 Cup Cilantro, roughly chopped
2 Tbsp. Jalapeno Pepper, I used roasted Hot jalapeno…
1 1/2 Tbsp. Garlic, finely chopped
2 Limes, quartered
Prepare the vegetables, lime, garlic, and jalapeno. Pour into a medium bowl, squeeze lime juice into mixture, stir to combine, and refrigerate for at least an hour. The longer it sits, the better it tastes.
For The Slaw
1 Bag of Broccoli Slaw
3/4 Cup Light Mayonnaise
1/2 Cup Rice Vinegar
Pepper to Taste
A Pinch of Sugar
Whisk mayo, vinegar, pepper, and sugar until smooth. Add to broccoli slaw and toss until completely combined. Refrigerate at least 1 hour.
Pour canola oil into a large skilled about 1 inch or so up the side. You need a lot less than you think and if it gets too deep, it can be dangerous. Set aside until you start cooking the fish.
Tear off several paper towels on a plate and set aside.
Rinse and dry fillets completely. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
In a large skillet, drizzle about 4 Tbsp. of olive oil and heat on medium to medium high heat. Add fish and cook until white and flakey. This will only take about 4 minutes on each side depending on the thickness of your fish fillets. Heat the oil on medium high until it starts to ripple. If it starts to smoke it’s too hot, turn it down to medium or even medium low. It really depends on your stove. You want the tortillas to sizzle when you put them in but a medium sizzle, not too low, and not too high.
When the fish is done, remove from burner and cover lightly with a lid. Fry corn tortillas one a time, they only take about 2 seconds on each side, layer in between paper towels on a plate. I fry a lot, maybe 15 or so because I like to have leftovers for lunch the next day. I would fry about 3 per person.
When tortillas are done, layer your tortillas with slaw, fish, and Pico. Serve with a wedge of lime and sliced avocado with pepper,and a good beer.
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