Saturday, May 2, 2009

Fish Tacos and Salsa Veracruz

I have no shame. These Onion Goggles are one of my favorite things in the kitchen. The cupcake apron was a gift from my mother.

I look so cool in these goggles - ha! I'm wearing them while chopping onions for some pretty amazing specialty salsa I made one evening. I had been thinking about making fish tacos for a while, and finally found a good post online from homesicktexan.

This salsa turned out to be fantastic as it is salty and acidic from the tomatoes, capers and green olives. Very interesting combination. I can't wait to make these fish tacos again, so so so yummy! Elke, this post is for you!

The first thing I did was wear my pink onion goggles and dice one yellow onion along with one jalapeno. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a pot over medium high heat, then cook the chopped onion and jalapeno for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Here are the rest of the ingredients for our Salsa Veracruz: 1 can crushed tomatoes, garlic, green olives, capers, dried marjoram, dried thyme, cayenne, bay leaves, cilantro, lime juice and salt.

After 10 minutes the onion starts to brown, then I add two cloves of minced garlic and cook for another minute.

Turn off the heat and add a 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes, scraping any brown bits that might have formed on the bottom of the pan. Mix well but don't let it get too hot.

Now I use my immersion blender and go to town on this mixture - blending it up until we have a smooth puree.

Now we add the rest of the ingredients. Here is 10-12 green olives which I chop up and add to the tomato sauce.

2 tablespoons of capers - basically the small jar, drained.

Add 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram.

Add 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme.

Add 1/4 teaspoon cayenne.

Add 1-2 bay leaves.

Stir to combine and then throw in 1/2 cup fresh chopped cilantro.

Bring the mixture to a boil and then turn down to simmer on low for 20 minutes. The last thing to do is fish out the bay leaves. Salsa Veracruz Ya'll!

Fish Tacos! I think any white flaky fish will do. I'm using tilapia which I seasoned with a little cumin, salt and pepper.

I cut each fillet in half to make them more manageable since I was going to wrap these up in a tortilla.

Each seasoned fish fillet went through a dusting of flour.

A bath in eggs.

Then a bath in japanese bread crumbs called Panko. The flour sticks to the fish, the egg sticks to the flour, the panko sticks to the egg. I set them all on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper and put them in the fridge for 30 minutes to "chill out." I read on that after you bread something like chicken or fish that placing in the fridge helps the coating stick together and stay on the meat after you cook it.

Meanwhile I prepare the black beans. I simply opened a can of black beans and poured into a small saucepan.

Then I seasoned the black beans with the same seasonings found in the salsa and on the fish. Cumin, marjoram, thyme, cayenne and garlic.

No measuring here, I just improvised. Then threw in some chopped cilantro. Let this heat through on the stove over low heat.

Now I'm ready to cook the fish fillets. I used about 1/2 cup of vegetable oil and heated on medium high heat for five minutes. If you flick a drop of water and it sizzles and pops, it's ready.

Without crowding the pan too much I fry the fish fillets until golden on the bottom, and flip to cook until golden on the other.

Drain on a paper towel. Work in batches until all are cooked.

Don't these look great? I really like using panko, they give such a great light and flaky crust when baked or fried.

When the fish completed I threw in some corn tortillas to fry until crispy - making a chalupa, my favorite vehicle for eating mexican food. It takes about 60 seconds per side to crisp up.

Once fried crispy its time to top this chalupa. Jim prefers to eat his fish tacos on a soft tortilla.

Here, Jim has a soft flour tortilla that he tops with two crispy fish fillets and a spoonful of fancy black beans.

Next top with some of the Salsa Veracruz.
My crispy chalupa has the flaky tilapia fillets, fancy black beans, salsa veracruz and fresh cilantro on top. Come to mama!!!


  1. Mandy, you look so, so cool and those tacos look so, so good!!! :)

  2. You have an award in my blog that I would like you to pick up .. :O)


Your comments mean a lot to me, I love hearing from you!