I still remember my very first fish taco. I had just moved from Minneapolis to Houston, TX and it was over 100 degrees outside. I stumbled upon a little taqueria called Berryhill Baja Grill, and was introduced to the amazing flavor profile of the fish taco. I immediately called my mom and she was not quite as excited about the idea of a fish taco, which was still very foreign in the year 2000 in the midwest. I could sense her hesitation when I told her that it was at the top of my list for her next visit, until…
My mother arrived in Texas and I dragged her to Berryhill and made her take a bite of my fish taco. Transformative is all I can say! Her next visit she told me that she wanted to be sure that we visited “that fish taco place” on the way to my house from the airport. Yep, I had a convert. And although my version is not quite the same as theirs, the flavor profile is very similar. Fish tacos are now on many menus here in the midwest (including my own), however I will never forget my first!
The secret to a good fish taco is all in the sauce. This chipotle crema contains a little kick and plenty of great flavor. A little mayonnaise gives the sauce some tang, but the greek yogurt keeps it from being too decadent. For my fish tacos I use tilapia. Now before you all hang me out to dry, I do get all of my fish from the coop, who sources only sustainable, eco-friendly fish. I know tilapia has become the outcast fish of the 21st century, and if you feel this way, certainly feel free to use another flaky white fish (it will be just as good!), but I have to admit, I like tilapia, and so this is still what I use.
The taco is finished off with crunchy cabbage, cilantro and green onions. Don’t forget the corn tortillas-flour tortillas, although great for a lot of different types of tacos, are not adequate for this one. Even if you haven’t liked corn tortillas in the past, try them for these fish tacos. Trust me.
- 4 Tilapia filets
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon lime juice
- 1 cup shredded cabbage (I used a coleslaw mix)
- ¼ cup cilantro leaves, chopped
- ¼ cup green onions, sliced
- 10 corn tortillas
- Chipotle Crema:
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ⅓ cup greek yogurt
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon dill weed
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 canned chipotle + 1 teaspoon of adobo sauce
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Place mayonnaise, greek yogurt, oregano, cumin, dill weed, salt and chipotle with sauce into a food processor or high power blender (Vitamin, Blendtec). Blend until smooth.
- Transfer sauce to a glass container and refrigerate until ready to use.
- Mix seasoning ingredients (chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt, and red pepper flakes) in a resealable bag.
- Add tilapia to bag and coat fish with spices.
- Heat olive oil in skillet on high.
- Saute tilapia in oil for 1-2 minutes per side, until fish is white and flaky (The cooking time will be dependent on how thick your filets are).
- Remove tilapia from skillet to a cutting board and then allow to rest for 5 minutes.
- Sprinkle the lime juice over the cooked tilapia.
- Flake tilapia into large chunks with a fork.
- Heat tortillas, wrapped in a damp paper towel, in the microwave for 30 seconds.
- Build taco son warm tortillas, adding shredded cabbage, seasoned tilapia, cilantro, green onion and cilantro crema.
- Serve with lime wedges.
Go ahead, let me know when you’ll be making these. I’ll be right over…