I don’t think I’ve ever met a fish taco I didn’t like. I’ve had them lots of different ways, and I like them all. I’ve had them with salmon, and catfish, and cod, and tuna, and tilapia. I’ve had them broiled, grilled, baked, and fried. I’ve had fruit salsas on them, and pico de gallo, and chipotle mayonnaise, and there’s even one version that I like that has a mustard sauce. But for simplicity’s sake, I always come back to the version I’m going to show you here. I took some pictures while I was making this, but I didn’t get a very good picture of the finished version because I like them really, really hot and crunchy, and I wasn’t going to sacrifice that just to get an artsy shot. So, sorry about that.
I don’t really have a recipe, or amounts. I just make it up as I go along, but my favorite kind of fish taco starts with an easy chipotle mayonnaise. Just chop up some canned chipotles in adobo sauce, as many as you want, and combine them to taste with mayonnaise–Hellmann’s, please, always. I also like just plain chopped cabbage on my tacos. Get these things ready first.As for the fish, I like tilapia. Tilapia is mild, affordable, accessible, and sustainable. I like to slice the filet lengthwise down the center to make two halves, and I use one half filet in each taco. I like to cook tilapia the way my mother always cooked fish. We didn’t eat a lot of seafood in my house when I was growing up. But every year we spent some time down on the Texas coast and my father would go fishing. We’d eat what he caught, usually flounder as I remember, and my mother would dredge the filets in seasoned cornmeal and fry them. That’s what I do, too. I don’t like them battered; the crunchiness of the cornmeal is what I’m going for.Then, just get the oil really hot, and fry them till they’re crispy. It shouldn’t take more than a few minutes. When they’re brown, they’re likely done. The ones in this picture are ready to come out.After that, it’s just a matter of heating up a good corn tortilla, putting a piece of fish on there all crunchy and hot, and adding the cabbage and chipotle mayonnaise. Oh, lordy, that looks good.