Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Recipe: Tilapia Fish Tacos

gluten free fish tacosYou might say I'm obsessed with fish tacos. After moving to New York from California three years ago, I've searched far and wide for some good fish taco joints. With the exception of a few places (notably Miracle Grill and Mercadito) I have been somewhat disappointed.

There is something about eating this dish in a fine dining establishment that rubs me the wrong way. In Southern California, fish tacos are almost like a fast food item. Being sold at places like Rubio's and Wahoo's, rather inexpensively.

Until Monday, I never attempted to recreate this dish in my own kitchen. Perhaps I thought this could only be prepared in the kitchen by Mexicans or on the soil of the Golden State. Boy was I wrong.

I was truly amazed by how easy these were to prepare. All it took was some corn tortillas, tilapia, guacamole, and some "house-made" chipotle mayo (a little Vegenaise and Chipotle Tabasco Sauce).

You probably won't see this dish in food magazines this time of year, as it is a classic summer item. Yet, I found a way to make it more December-friendly - adding a colorful radish, broiling instead of grilling, and serving with some roasted sweet potatoes.

I think the key is to find some good corn tortillas. I like the ones at Trader Joes (now in Brooklyn) and by Hot Bread Kitchen (a pretty cool social enterprise that employs local, immigrant bakers).

Here is my recipe. Try for yourself and save the trip to Baja.

Serves 2

1 avocado
3 tbsp salsa
1/8 red onion, diced
A few springs of cilantro
1/4 tsp salt
Juice from 1/4 lemon

In a medium bowl mash avocado with other ingredients.

Chipotle Mayo
3 tbsp Vegenaise
a bit of Chipotle Tabasco Sauce

In a small bowl, mix together until slight red color from Tabasco sauce. Add more/less depending on taste.

4 corn tortillas
8 oz tilapia, patted dry
1 radish, sliced
1/3 tsp paprika
1/3 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp salt
juice of 1/4 lemon

Preheat the broiler. While heating, drizzle the lemon juice over the fish and sprinkle the chili powder, paprika, oregano, and salt on both sides. Place the whole fish on the broiler rack and leave in oven for 6-10 minutes. Check on fish and make sure it is fully cooked. Transfer to platter and cut up into one-inch-thick strips. Turn off broiler.

Wrap stack of tortillas in foil and place in the oven for a couple minutes (the residual heat should be enough to warm these). Top tortillas with chipotle mayo, broiled fish, guacamole, and sliced radish.

Serve with a lemon or lime wedge. Enjoy!


Tangled Noodle said...

This looks amazing! Fish tacos in the Midwest during winter - thank you for sharing this!

Bryan said...

I have very similar views to yours on fish tacos. You've enlightened me to try this dish at home. said...

Hello from sunny San Diego fish taco capitol of the world! Great recipe nice photo's. Keep up the good work.

Anonymous said...

Thank you! I've always baked my fish...tonight I will try it your way in the broiler- also good with a slaw- I make a slaw from red cabbage, fresh squeezed lime juice and a little chopped red onion. Salt to taste... let sit for several hours to kind of "pickle" . I also use chopped mango and avocado to be the sweet balance to the slaw- yum yum

Mike said...

Nice looking tacos! Even though I'm in San Diego, I still like making them at home sometimes.

Lydia McD. said...

Wow, I'm really enjoying your blog, and these look sooooo good. What a nice surprise to find you a little over a week after committing to a gluten-free diet. Saw your blurb in the Institute for Integrative Nutrition catalog, and though the blog sounded interesting, and I was happy to find it very much is.

Jen said...

Thanks so much for a great recipe! My fiance said this is one of the best dishes I have ever made for him. The chipotle mayo was key!

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