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Recipe: The Perfect Fish Taco

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July 18, 2011

Recipe: The Perfect Fish Taco

By David Draper

Since I first discovered fish tacos just a few years back, I’ve been on a continual quest to find the best recipe. The most recent rendition, which I featured in last Friday’s Food Fight, was pretty good, but still didn’t meet the standards of my very first fish taco, which was a riff on a recipe I cut from Salt Water Sportsman back when former F&S dog blogger Dave DiBenedetto was running the ship.

Though I admit to being a bit hesitant to my first taste, I’ve been hooked ever since and now cut or copy every fish taco recipe I come across. There seem to be as many renditions as there are fish in the sea, but I go back to the classic of batter-fried fish with cabbage and some sort of cream sauce. Cheese is an optional, yet good addition, as are sliced avocados. One thing that is not optional, for me, is a healthy squeeze of lime juice and a shot of tequila backed by a cold beer, preferably Pacifico.

I’ve tried several different types of cream sauce, but the best incorporate yogurt. Here’s my go-to recipe when I’m not experimenting:

Creamy Fish Taco Sauce

- ¼ cup plain yogurt
- ¼ cup sour cream
- 1 diced jalapeno (with a few seeds added in for heat)
- Juice from one lime
- 1 tbs. chopped cilantro
- Optional: red pepper flakes or a dash of hot sauce such as Louisiana Chef Sauce or Tabasco

Combine the above ingredients in a small bowl and refrigerate for at least one hour. Add a healthy dollop to a soft flour tortilla (I know corn is standard, but I prefer flour), along with a chunk of fried or grilled fish and some shredded cabbage. Squeeze lime juice over everything and enjoy.

Comments (12)

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from Greenhead wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

I love fish tacos, but haven't been able to get my recipe right. I prefer my fish grilled or blackened, rather than fried, though. I'll be sure to give your sauce a shot.

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from ingebrigtsen wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

well my recipy for a sourcream sauce is real simple really.. just adjust the ingredients to taste..
take about a big coffemug ammount of sourcream (since u all r yanks and i dont know what measurements u all are accustomed to) then add about half an inch of horseraddish from a tube (cant get it fresh here)5-6 cloves of garlic squeezed through a press. then add a couple of big pinches of seasalt and mix vigorously.. then leave in the fridge for atleast an hour and a half.. wonderfull on fish bbq and as a dip for both potato chips and tacos.. wonderfully easy to make and delishious for so many things.. even got me laid once as a dip.. beat that david ;):D:P:))

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from 2Poppa wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Yum! Yum! Thst is one recipe that is coming sooner than later. Thanks for sharing.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from steve182 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

I forgo the cream sauce in favor of either(or both) fresh pico de gallo(diced tomato, onion, jalapeno, garlic, lime juice and a ton of cilantro.) or guacamole. I usually lightly flour the fish and pan fry it rather than deep frying, for a fresher crisper texture and flavor. Also i sometimes use shredded lettuce instead of cabbage. I never follow a recipe and cook based on what i have at the moment or what i'm feeling. The key flavors for me are cilantro, jalapeno and lime. Often a green tomatilla salsa is in order.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jbird wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

MMMMMMMMMM! Gotta try that sauce!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from ingebrigtsen wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

oh. forgot. add some white pepper.. can use black too but white mixes seamlessly in to make it look better :P

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from dtbc333 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Can't take any more of this fish taco talk without having one. I'm going to try the sauce, but I am changing the jalapenos to roasted green chilies(sp?) because I already have some of those, and I think they will go good.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from steve182 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Funny i was already planning to make fish tacos this week before i saw this post. Now it's a definite.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tkbone wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Fish taco in running for best food advancement of the new millenium. Best I ever had was marinated shark I grilled at home and guacamole or avocado are required ingredients.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from danny6114 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Not to be nit-picky, but the seeds in chile peppers don't actually add any heat. The glands and inner ribs of the chiles secretes the capsaicin and some gets on the seeds. So you don't need to add them at all, just dice the chiles up and you'll get all the heat, should you prefer a little less heat slice the whitish ribs away inside the peppers. http://www.thechileman.org/guide_heat.php

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from NWM wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Best one I've ever had was coated in corn meal, pan fried, with fresh pico, and a little plain sour cream on a warm flour torilla.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from ableskeever wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Best fish taco I ever had was on the fishing boat we caught the fish on. Red Snapper fillets make for great tacos... especially less than 30 minutes after they were swimming.

I need to find that Baja fisherman again.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from ingebrigtsen wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

oh. forgot. add some white pepper.. can use black too but white mixes seamlessly in to make it look better :P

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from dtbc333 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Can't take any more of this fish taco talk without having one. I'm going to try the sauce, but I am changing the jalapenos to roasted green chilies(sp?) because I already have some of those, and I think they will go good.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Greenhead wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

I love fish tacos, but haven't been able to get my recipe right. I prefer my fish grilled or blackened, rather than fried, though. I'll be sure to give your sauce a shot.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from ingebrigtsen wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

well my recipy for a sourcream sauce is real simple really.. just adjust the ingredients to taste..
take about a big coffemug ammount of sourcream (since u all r yanks and i dont know what measurements u all are accustomed to) then add about half an inch of horseraddish from a tube (cant get it fresh here)5-6 cloves of garlic squeezed through a press. then add a couple of big pinches of seasalt and mix vigorously.. then leave in the fridge for atleast an hour and a half.. wonderfull on fish bbq and as a dip for both potato chips and tacos.. wonderfully easy to make and delishious for so many things.. even got me laid once as a dip.. beat that david ;):D:P:))

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from 2Poppa wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Yum! Yum! Thst is one recipe that is coming sooner than later. Thanks for sharing.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from steve182 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

I forgo the cream sauce in favor of either(or both) fresh pico de gallo(diced tomato, onion, jalapeno, garlic, lime juice and a ton of cilantro.) or guacamole. I usually lightly flour the fish and pan fry it rather than deep frying, for a fresher crisper texture and flavor. Also i sometimes use shredded lettuce instead of cabbage. I never follow a recipe and cook based on what i have at the moment or what i'm feeling. The key flavors for me are cilantro, jalapeno and lime. Often a green tomatilla salsa is in order.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jbird wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

MMMMMMMMMM! Gotta try that sauce!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from steve182 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Funny i was already planning to make fish tacos this week before i saw this post. Now it's a definite.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tkbone wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Fish taco in running for best food advancement of the new millenium. Best I ever had was marinated shark I grilled at home and guacamole or avocado are required ingredients.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from danny6114 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Not to be nit-picky, but the seeds in chile peppers don't actually add any heat. The glands and inner ribs of the chiles secretes the capsaicin and some gets on the seeds. So you don't need to add them at all, just dice the chiles up and you'll get all the heat, should you prefer a little less heat slice the whitish ribs away inside the peppers. http://www.thechileman.org/guide_heat.php

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from NWM wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Best one I've ever had was coated in corn meal, pan fried, with fresh pico, and a little plain sour cream on a warm flour torilla.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from ableskeever wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

Best fish taco I ever had was on the fishing boat we caught the fish on. Red Snapper fillets make for great tacos... especially less than 30 minutes after they were swimming.

I need to find that Baja fisherman again.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

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