During the summer our thoughts turn to lighter foods. Salads, sandwiches, watermelon, fresh vegetables, grilled everything, and even seafood comes to mind. Grilled salmon, crawfish boils, soft shell crabs, and line caught fish are all summer traditions. While I don’t get to fish too often I wanted to share one of my favorite recipes for fish tacos. Fish tacos are a nice surprise and a great addition to your typical summer menu. So this week instead of just walking past the fish case, and thinking how nice everything looks, stop by and pick up something good from your fishmonger (Even though it may sound funny, fishmonger is not a bad word, it is a term used for the person who sells fish, just like butcher is the term for the person who sells meat.).
1. Wash your hands.
2. For this recipe you will need measuring spoons and cups, a knife, a cutting board, a large bowl, a small bowl, a large sauté pan, tongs, a blender or food processor, a whisk, and a rubber spatula.
If you are not allowed to use the stove or a knife by yourself you can ask an adult to help.
ChefElla’s Fish Tacos (6-8 Tacos)
1lb. Tilapia, Mahi Mahi, Walleye or Catfish, Skinned, De-boned, and Fileted
-If you do not like fish you can use shrimp, scallops, soft shell crab, or even extra firm tofu.
4 Tbl. Olive Oil
1/8 Cup Orange Juice (about ½ of a large orange if you have fresh oranges)
1 tsp Salt, Kosher or Sea
¼ tsp Black Pepper
1 tsp Cornstarch
½ tsp Cumin, Ground
4 Cups Tortilla Chips, Crushed into crumbs (You can use a blender or food processor to crush)
1 pkg Corn Tortillas, Small
ChefElla’s Cilantro Broccoli Slaw
10 oz. Broccoli Slaw (You can find this in the produce section of your local grocery store.)
1 ½ Cup Red Onion, Julienne (cut into thin strips)(about 1/2 medium onion)
1/2 Cup Cilantro Leaves, Minced (1/2 cup loose packed leaves)
1/2 Cup Mayonnaise
1 Tbl. Lime Juice
1 Tbl. Sugar
½ tsp Garlic, Granulated
1 tsp Celery Salt
3. Cut fish into 1 inch wide by 2 inches long pieces and put fish into a re-sealable plastic quart sized plastic bag or a bowl with a cover.
4. In a small bowl mix, olive oil, orange juice, salt, pepper, cornstarch and cumin until blended. Pour mixture over the fish and mix well. Seal the container and let sit for 15-20 minutes or until you are ready to cook.
5. Blend the corn chips into crumbs, and store crumbs in a bowl.
6. In a large bowl mix lime juice, sugar, garlic, and celery salt with a whisk. When blended add cilantro and mayonnaise and mix until well all of the ingredients are blended.
7. Add julienne onions and broccoli slaw to the dressing and mix well. Cover and place in the refrigerator until you are ready to eat.
Note: If you like your slaw drier add more broccoli slaw or use less dressing.
8. Take one piece of fish and place into the bread crumbs (this is your breading hand). Cover the piece of fish with extra bread crumbs (your dry hand) and pat gently to coat. Gently shake off any excess crumbs back into the bowl with your dry hand and place fish on a plate. Repeat process until all of the fish is coated. Remember to keep your breading hand separate from your dry hand. Try to keep the fish pieces from touching.
9. Line a large plate with 2 to 3 layers of paper towel or thick paper napkins.
10. Heat your sauté pan on medium high heat. When the pan is hot add enough olive or vegetable oil to the pan so there is a thin layer of oil on the bottom. Place the fish in the pan try to keep the fish pieces from touching. You may need to cook your fish in two batches.
11. Cook the small pieces of fish for 2-3 minutes. Using your tongs turn the fish over and cook for another 3 minutes. Remove the small fish pieces from the pan and place on your paper lined plate. The process is the same for your larger pieces of fish but cook for 3-4 minutes on one side, flip and then cook for another 4 minutes. If you think your pan is too hot turn it down and cook the fish a little longer. You do not want to blacken your tortilla crust.
12. If you have a toaster oven place 3 to 4 corn tortillas in the oven and toast for 30-40 seconds or until they are warm. If you prefer the microwave wrap 4-6 tortillas in a paper towel or thick napkin and microwave for 25-30 seconds or until the tortillas are warm. Keep the tortillas wrapped up until you are ready to use them.
To serve place 2-3 pieces of fish into your warm corn tortilla shell and top with your broccoli slaw.
Serve your fish tacos with guacamole, salsa, fresh tomatoes, jack cheese, or any of your favorite toppings.
Ella’s Helpers can help in the kitchen by doing any of the following:
Measuring the ingredients and mixing the marinade for the fish.
Measuring out the tortilla chips and grinding them into crumbs.
Measuring and mixing the ingredients for the broccoli slaw sauce.
Mixing up the broccoli slaw.
Pulling off the cilantro leaves and filling a ½ cup.
Bigger helpers can help bread the fish and make the tacos.