First, off, this isn’t my recipe. It came from Michael, known variously as Arenadi on Xanga and chow on IReallyLikeFood.com. He’s been AWOL for the last several months, wrapped up working on a congressional campaign in Hawai’i. He took the time a week or two back to post this recipe on his Facebook account and it sounded so good I figured I should do my part to share it with Xangaland.
As is often the case, I managed to vary the recipe a bit. It still turned out quite nicely.
Fish Tacos with Avocado-Cilantro Lime Cream Sauce
Yellow Corn Tortillas (the 4-5 inch kind)
Cream or Half-and-Half
Fish (firm white fish – snapper or cod are good)
Panko (Japanese-style bread crumbs)
First thing you want to do is get your mise en place set up for dressing the tacos. This means chopping the red cabbage and mincing the red onion. Chop your cilantro roughly. Slice your avocado about 1/4″ thick and remove the skin.
Put a handful of cilantro, a clove of garlic, about 1/4 of the avocado, a liberal dousing of Tabasco sauce, the juice of 1/4 of a Lime, a small scoop of mayonnaise, and about 2 Tbsp of cream into a blender/ food processor, and combine until you have a nice creamy sauce. Add more or less cream depending on how “loose” you want the sauce. Not being one to follow instructions carefully, I put the entire avocado into the sauce, making it very avocado-y and leaving none left for the taco itself. That’s okay, though.
Optionally, make some salsa.
This wasn’t in Michael’s recipe, but it is easy to make. Chop some tomatoes, onion, chili peppers (to taste), and green pepper and pulse a few times in a blender or food processor. Add some cilantro and a few more chopped tomatoes and then season to taste. A squirt of lime juice is nice. Some salt will work, too.
Make the taco shells:
Note – if you like your tacos soft shell (the way I do) you can skip this step, opting instead just to warm up the tortillas in the microwave or in a skillet.
Heat your oil in a skillet at about 1 to 2 inches depth to about 320 F. Using tongs or chopsticks, hold half of the tortilla into the oil and let it cook for about 30 seconds. Release it, pick up the other side (that was in the oil), and hold the side that wasn’t in the oil down into the oil to cook. Repeat until the desired crispness is achieved.
Cook the fish:
Heat the oil (1 to 2 inches) in a skillet to about 340 F. Cut your fish into strips. Roll in some flour and then shake to remove excess. Then dip the fish into a beaten egg, and then roll it in the panko bread crumbs. Fry fish strips in the skillet for about 3 minutes and then turn over for another 2 minutes. Note that the timing will depend upon the thickness of the fish and could be much shorter. It is a good idea to try one piece first, remove it once browned and cut it open and see if it is cooked through. Increase or lower the heat as necessary to ensure that the fish isn’t browning on the outside before the inside is cooked the way you like it.
Place red cabbage (you’ll notice I used green, which tastes fine) and red onion on the tortillas. Lay avocado slices on top of that. (Whoops – none left thanks to my mistake with the sauce!) Lay the fish on top of that. Put a nice dollop of avocado-cilantro sauce on the fish. Add some salsa (optional), a squeeze of lime, a splash of Tabasco sauce, and you are ready to serve.
Serve with some black beans on the side. I made some homemade beans with some sofrito to flavor them – a combination of onions, red bell peppers, and various spices. Easy and very healthy.
The finished product. Very tasty. Extremely tasty. That avocado sauce is amazing. Deep-frying the fish was an extra step that might be more work than I’d always want to put into it, but I think I could have just pan fried the fish and it would have turned out equally nice.
Thanks to Michael for sharing this recipe with me and I hope he puts it on his Xanga site soon enough.