To me fish tacos might just be the perfect food—a healthy protein topped with lots of crunchy veggies all wrapped in a corn tortilla. More often than not, you will see fish tacos served with fried fish. Don’t get me wrong, fried foods are delicious, but I feel like fried fish makes this meal too heavy. Instead I like to toss my fish in lots of flavorful herbs and spices then sauté it on the stovetop.
One of the most important parts of this recipe is the quality of the fish. Make sure to buy good quality fish. Ask your local fishmonger or fish counter at the grocery store to recommend a type of fish if halibut or cod is unavailable. I like flaky white fish in this dish because it is the most neutral tasting. Also feel free to substitute peeled and deveined shrimp for the fish.
The recipe also calls for pickled red onion. I know the word pickling sounds a little scary but these are easy, I promise. There are two kinds of pickling: a quick pickle and a fermented pickle. The difference between these two is huge. A quick pickle is when a hot liquid made up of vinegar, sugar, and salt is poured over a vegetable and within a couple minutes you have the world’s most perfect condiment that is crunchy, salty, and a little sweet. It is handy in everything from salads to tacos. A fermented pickle are things like kimchi or sauerkraut where vegetables are fermented for weeks using salt and the vegetables own lactic acid. Fermented pickles are really healthy for you and are available at most grocery stores. The pickle in this recipe is a quick pickle. If you don’t have the time to do the red onion pickle, don’t worry about skipping it, the taco will still taste delicious.
Photos by Amanda Frederickson
Quick-Pickled Red Onions
- 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon + 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon + 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 head cabbage, chopped
- 2 to 3 radishes, julienned
- 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped
- 2 limes, juiced
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
- 1 pound flaky white fish, such as halibut or cod, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 1 avocado, skin and pits removed, sliced
- 1 package corn tortillas, warmed
- sour cream, lime wedges, and jalapeños for serving
In a medium-sized sauce pot over medium heat, combine the vinegar, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 tablespoon sugar. Stir until the salt and sugar has dissolved. Add in red onion slices and combine. Cover red onions and allow to cool. Set aside.
Combine cabbage, radish and cilantro in a medium sized bowl. Toss with lime juice, remaining sugar and salt. Set aside.
In a small bowl combine paprika, cumin, onion, garlic, salt, pepper and oregano.
Toss fish with 1 tablespoon of the spice mixture and save remaining mixture in an airtight container.
In a non-stick pan over medium high heat warm canola oil. Add fish and cook for 4 to 6 minutes or until fish is firm and starting to flake.
Assemble the fish tacos by layering fish, cabbage mixture, avocado and pickled onions in a corn tortilla. Serve with additional pickled onions, sour cream, lime wedges and jalapeños.
- Total Fat
- Saturated Fat
- Dietary Fiber