I have to admit, back in the late ‘90’s the idea of ‘fish tacos’ made me gag. Thinking it was a dish of fish spiced up in the traditional cumin-oregano-chile-garlic manner slathered with cheese and tomato salsa, well, it didn’t entice my appetite; besides, why bother?
It wasn’t until middle daughter and newly-inducted-into-the-family-son-in-law prepared fish tacos for us one visit to Nashville in 2013 that it dawned on me: fish tacos are their own beast!
Sorry to say it took us that long to appreciate this culinary treat, but there it is. Next hurdle was to conquer preconceived notions of it being a complicated treat to prepare.
Contrary to popular perception, it is in fact a meal that goes from stove to table in a flash.
Next hurdle? What’s the best fish for the job?
FloTown introduced a new fresh South Carolina sourced fish shop in late Spring. I couldn’t wait until all the local species of fresh fish would come into season.
After returning from my Colorado visit with Dad, I made tracks to this shop straight away. The ‘fish monger’ suggested Mahi Mahi for the taco delight and I spent several days trying to obtain fresh Mahi Mahi from him. Unfortunately his suppliers aren’t the most reliable, so I decided ‘3 strikes & you’re out’ and proceeded to buy the typical frozen Tilapia fillets available in any chain grocery store.
Am I ever glad I did that! Cheaper than luscious Mahi Mahi, but fit the bill perfectly!
Here then is my recipe for a Fish Taco Dinner culled from various sources and improvised as it was made in progress.
Oh and BTW: my beloved Chardonnay does NOT go well with this fish dish…I’m thinking Corona Cerveza with a wedge of lime is the way to go.
Fish Tacos, slaw and salsa
For the fish:
1/3 c flour
s & p to taste
1 – 1 ½ lbs tilapia
2 T olive oil
For the slaw:
1 small cabbage, shredded (2-4 cups)
1 small carrot, grated
2 – 3 green onions, thinly sliced
½ – 1 jalapeno chile, thinly sliced (optional, depends upon how much is in entire meal)
1 clove garlic, minced
½ – 1 lime, juiced
2 T Miracle Whip
s & p
For the salsa:
1 mango, cubed
1 jalapeno, thinly sliced (optional, depends upon how much is in entire meal)
1 c cilantro chopped
½ lime, juiced
s & p
To prepare fish, combine flour, s & p, paprika in shallow dish. Pat fish dry, then dredge in flour mix and shake excess. Heat oil in pan over medium-high heat until oil is shimmery. Add fish one fillet at a time, cook 2-3 minutes per side. Transfer to paper towels, then flake into chunks.
Heat tortillas in microwave, serve with cilantro, avocado, salsa & slaw on the side or inside taco with fish.