I have never in my life eaten a fish taco. Why? I don't really know, except that most places one finds tacos, one would not be too sure about the quality of the fish. I usually only trust seafood places to have good fish. And fish that is not good is...well, not good. However, I have always been curious about fish tacos, so when trying to come up with something different to do with tilapia (I bought a big bag of frozen fillets at WinCo), the idea dropped in my mind to try making my own! This being said, I still have no clue what a normal or truly Mexican fish taco tastes like- but...I do like my own! :) I found a recipe on the site of a woman who lived in Colombia for a time, and makes many Colombian or Central/South American flavored dishes. I figured I could probably trust her! :)
The recipe is very simple, with only a few common spices and flavors, so it isn't overly bold or spicy. I sprinkled the thawed fillets with cumin, salt & pepper and chili powder, then drizzled them with lime juice and olive oil, while a little more oil was heating in a skillet. Then, while the fish browned lightly on both sides (about 4 min per side), I made avocado salsa.
The recipe called for diced avocados, chopped onion, lime juice, cilantro and olive oil, but I kind of made my own variation. I didn't have any cilantro, so I skipped that, and to make it more like salsa, I added a couple of diced Roma tomatoes to the mix. It turned out sort of like guacamole, except less mushy and a little zestier (lime juice instead of lemon?).
I was surprised how easy this meal was! Once the fish was done, I used a fork to break it up into flaky chunks, warmed up tortillas in the microwave (you can also do this in a hot, non-stick, ungreased skillet) and tore up some green leaf lettuce. We then piled the fish, salsa and lettuce into our tortillas and enjoyed them with some roasted potatoes and fresh mango chunks. It was a light, delicious dinner! Travis really enjoyed it, and he isn't really even a fish fan! :) The fish was sweet and mild, with just the faintest zing, and the salsa was delicious! It's a keeper!
Tilapia Fish Tacos
serves about 4
1 lb. tilapia fish
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp chili powder
juice of 2 limes, divided
salt and pepper
2 TB chopped fresh cilantro
2 TB diced onion
1 avocado, diced
1 TB olive oil
1-2 Roma tomatoes, diced (optional)
Place fish on plate and sprinkle with cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and juice of 1 lime.
Preheat skillet over medium-high heat. Add the fish and cook until golden on the outside (about 4 min. per side). Remove from skillet and transfer to a plate. Shred lightly.
Combine cilantro, onion, avocado and tomatoes (if desired) and set aside.
To assemble tacos, place an equal amount of fish in each tortilla, along with a big spoonful of the avocado mixture and top with shredded lettuce.