Skip the smelly oil that accompanies fried fish tacos and opt instead for a cleaner, healthier version. The rich spiciness of the chipotle peppers pairs perfectly with the smoke, which takes easily to any firm, flaky fish.
4 fillets of any firm, white-fleshed fish, i.e. halibut, walleye, catfish
2 quarts cold water
½ cup kosher salt
½ cup brown sugar
Little’s Chili Lime Seasoning
Corn tortillas for serving
2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, diced
½ cup mayonnaise
2 tbs. honey
Juice and zest of one lime
1 cup firmly packed white cabbage
1 cup firmly packed red cabbage
½ medium red onion, chopped
6 green onions, chopped
For the Smoked Fish
1. In a large glass or plastic non-reactive container, make the brine by whisking together cold water, kosher salt, and sugar. Place fish fillets in the brine, adding water to cover if necessary. Place the container in the refrigerator and brine overnight.
2. Remove the fish from the brine and place on a wire rack. Pat dry and let air dry until a pellicle (sticky surface) forms. Season generously with Little’s Chili Lime Seasoning.
3. Heat your smoker to 225° and add wood chips, preferably apple or alder, but any sweet-smoking wood will do. Place the fish in the smoker and smoke until the fish flakes easily with a fork. Time will depend on the thickness of the fillets.
For the Chipotle Slaw
1. While the fish is smoking, make the chipotle slaw by whisking together the chipotle peppers, mayonnaise, honey, and lime juice and zest in a large bowl. Add the white and red cabbage, red onion, and green onion, tossing to combine. Add a pinch of kosher salt to taste and refrigerate until the smoked fish is done and the tacos are ready to be built.