The easiest way to get you hands around these divine tacos is to purchase them from a street vendor along the way to the Baja coast. But for me, here in Mobile, I’ll just have to make my own.
A firm fish like swordfish or shark works best but unless you go out fishing a lot, it is unlikely landlubbers will have it available. Other firm fish great for tacos – tuna, halibut, mahi mahi and the like of snapper, catfish, redfish, speckled trout and black drum will hold up just fine too.
Baja Mexican Fish Tacos
1 pound of the freshest fish fillets –
Salt and pepper
1 dozen corn tortillas -about 3 tortillas per person
Salsa – Mango salsa is excellent
1 ripe Avocado
Cabbage -or romaine lettuce
Prepare the salsa — Either use store bought or make your own. Prepare the cabbage and avocado. Thinly slice cabbage. Put in a small serving bowl. Sprinkle with cider vinegar (about a Tbsp) and salt (about a tsp). Mix in the vinegar and salt. Peel avocado and remove seed. Chop and reserve for later.
Soften the tortillas in the microwave for a few seconds. Or heat them in a well seasoned black cast iron skillet on medium heat. Add a teaspoon of oil to the pan and place tortilla in the pan . As the tortilla sizzles, flip the tortilla with a spatula so that the other side gets some of the oil from the pan. Continue to flip every 10-30 seconds until the tortillas begins to develop air pockets, about a minute. If the pan begins to smoke, lower the temperature. Remove the tortilla from the pan and place it folded on a plate. If the pan is large enough you can prepare two or more tortillas at once. Continue until all the tortillas are cooked. Set aside.
Cook the fish — Soak the fish fillets in cold water for at least one minute. Pat dry with a paper towel. Heat a large stick-free skillet to medium high heat. Add a couple of teaspoons of olive oil to the skillet. Place fish on skillet. Cooking time depends on the thickness of the fillets. A thin fillet may take only one minute on each side to cook. A thicker fillet may take a couple of minutes. Fish should be still barely translucent when cooked. Break off a piece and test if you are not sure. Do not overcook the fish. Remove from pan when done to a separate plate. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Assembly — I think tacos are best when you assemble them yourself. Place the plate of tortillas, the plate of fish, the salsa, the cabbage, and the avocados on the table and let everyone assemble their own.