Marinated Fish Tacos
Totally full disclosure. I did not take this photo. These are someone elses’s delicious fish tacos. I have no clue how to take a picture of marinated fish tacos that is even remotely appealing. Photo by Jmao13 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Marinades are really flexible and not at all mysterious. Fat + acid + salt + seasonings do to meat (and veggies or tofu) what they are supposed to do: Get yummy flavors all burrowed into the food.
Marinated fish tacos fit right into this formula. For this marinade I used canola oil for the fat; lime juice for the acid; a little kosher salt; and garlic, cumin, chili powder & fresh cilantro for seasonings.
Longer marinating is not always better!
The acid can begin to chemically cook the fish after a relatively short time (think ceviche) and that’s not what we’re going for here. For marinated fish tacos I recommend 15 or 20 minutes while you’re preparing other items.
1/4 quarter cup plus 2 teaspoons canola oil
2 tablespoons lime juice (or 1 juicy lime)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1.5 – 2 pounds cod or other white fish fillets (to serve 6 generously)
Place all marinade ingredients in a gallon size zip top bag or in a baking dish just big enough to hold the marinade plus the fish. Mix the marinade ingredients. Add the fish. Close the bag/ cover the dish and marinate in the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes.
Very lightly oil a pan over medium-high heat. While it’s heating, scrape the seasonings off of each piece of fish and discard the marinade. When the pan is heated, carefully place the fillets, skin side down, into the pan and then keep your itchy fingers off of them for at least 3 minutes (possibly 5 or more if the fillets are very thick). If you try to move them around they will stick and fall apart and you will say bad words.
Watch the fish!
Don’t blink. Don’t look away. Not even for a moment.
I suppose you could look away for a moment, but do watch them! When they have become opaque about halfway through the thickness they are ready to be turned.
Carefully, gently, lovingly turn the fillets and cook for another few minutes until they are opaque all the way through. Please don’t overcook them. They hate that.
Put a little of the fish into each taco shell and top with some crunchy red cabbage and avocado slices. Serve a corn salad and some beans alongside. Super yum!