I’m going to keep this brief: make these tacos!!
Not only do they offer all the crunch and chew and fluffiness that you want in a stellar fried fish taco but they also offer a spring twist on the classic summertime salsa by using radishes in place of tomatoes.
Many of you might be lucky enough to have a few early radishes popping up in your gardens (but really who knows, this weather has been truly awful). If you do, this is the place to use them. Their bite (both literally and figuratively) work here; the salt and lime balance out their sharp flavor and their crisp texture is a wonderful balance to the soft, creamy nature of the fish.
I was so in love with this salsa that initially I was just going to post the recipe by itself but then came across a lovely looking fresh fillet of cod and knew I had just met a match destined for each other. That being said, any flakey white fish would work here; tilapia, catfish, even halibut if you fancy. I know frying can be a little bit of a pain in the butt, so maybe this isn’t an I’m-exhaused-what’s-for-dinner-recipe. Try it this weekend when you’re a bit more relaxed. The beer batter only uses half of a beer so you can drink the rest while you’re cooking—see I’ve got you covered. By the way, I used Negro Modelo because I like it’s malty flavor in the batter and to drink but you could use whatever kind you like, just remember a really light beer is not going to lend a ton of beer flavor, it’s up to you.
One more thing, a crunchy slaw is pretty typical with Baja-style tacos like these. Here’s a good recipe if you’d like to give it a try: Cilantro-Lime Coleslaw.
- 1 bunch radishes (about 6 ounces), scrubbed, stemmed, and diced
- 1 jalapeño, stemmed and diced (seeds removed if you'd like it less spicy)
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro leaves
- ⅓ cup chopped red onion (about ¼ of an onion)
- Juice of 1 lime
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 cups vegetable oil, for frying
- 1 pound cod, cut into 1-inch thick strips
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- 6 ounces beer
- 8-10 warm corn tortillas
- avocado, for serving
- lime wedges, for serving
- Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Taste and add more salt and lime juice as needed.
- Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. It is best to attach a deep fry thermometer to keep an eye on the temperature. You want it to stay at around 350°F so raise or lower the heat as you are frying accordingly. If you don't have a thermometer you'll know when the oil is ready when a piece of bread browns in 30 seconds.
- While oil is heating toss fish in 2 tablespoons of flour and season with salt and pepper.
- In a medium bowl combine remaining ½ cup of flour, baking powder, and cumin. Season mixture with about ½ teaspoon of salt and a generous grinding of black pepper.
- Make a well in the center and add beer. Whisk beer into flour mixture until a smooth batter forms.
- Lay a couple of layers of paper towel on a baking sheet and set near the stove.
- When oil is ready, dip a few pieces of fish into the batter then carefully slide into oil. Leave undisturbed for a couple minutes then gently nudge any that have stuck to the bottom of the pan with a pair of tongs. Let cook until golden and crispy on all sides and cooked through, about 5 minutes.
- Remove to paper towel-lined baking sheet and try to fish out any floating pieces of batter with a bamboo skimmer.
- Repeat with remaining pieces of fish.
- To serve place fish in warm tortillas, top with pico de gallo and a few avocado slices.
One More Thing
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