I love having leftovers. Fish tacos are one of my favorite leftover delicacies. However, I never cook fish exclusively to make fish tacos—but when I do cook fish, I make enough for leftovers.
And that’s exactly what I did the last time I made fish (my finger-licking-good—if I do say so myself—Walnut-Crusted Whiting). We ate the fish as I’d shown in the blog the first night, and the next night, I made fish tacos. My recipe in the blog serves four, although I actually cooked about 10 pieces of fish that night.
Fish Tacos in a nutshell: Depending on how complicated you want to get, you can buy all of your ingredients premade and then put it all together. I already had the leftover fish…I made Chipotle Slaw (recipe below), shredded some lettuce, made my own guacamole (recipe below—but you can buy it), used jarred salsa and set up a taco bar on the stove top, kind of like my Pasta & Veggie Bar from a previous blog. (As you might have guessed, I like food bars—I frequently do a salad bar as an appetizer, especially when we have guests; I can create much more interesting options than when I’m otherwise preparing to the “lowest common denominator” of individuals’ food tastes.)
I used soft corn tortillas because we’re gluten-free in our house, but soft flour tortillas or crispy corn tacos would be equally delicious. Or you could use large lettuce leaves (or steam cabbage or kale leaves to soften), and forgo the traditional “taco” altogether.
To warm up soft tacos: When there are only a few people having dinner (this night, it was just one daughter and me), heat a small stainless steel frying pan on medium-high, spritz with a bit of olive oil spray, and put in the tortilla for about 10 seconds on a side. Use bamboo tongs to flip, so that you don’t burn your fingers or break the tortilla. If there are more of you and you don’t want to stand over the frying pan, wrap up to six tortillas in foil and warm them in a 350°F oven for eight to 10 minutes. More people, more foil-wrapped tortilla packages. Microwaving is also an option, but I’m not keen on what it does to the texture of the tortilla.
This fixing isn’t just for tacos. It’s also delicious as a side dish. Actually, I added beans and corn to the leftovers the next day for lunch.
- ¼ head red or green cabbage (I used a whole red cabbage, but it was from my garden and only about the size of my fist!)
- Equivalent amount of kale
- Mayonnaise to taste (I used a vegan “mayonnaise” because we’re egg-free).
- Chipotle chili powder to taste
- I used equal amounts of kale and cabbage. No one in my family is a fan of kale, but the chipotle dressing masks it. It was a good way to use up some the abundance of kale we received from our farm share.
- Slice cabbage into thin shreds.
- Remove stems from kale leaves, then slice leaves into similarly thin shreds.
- Add mayonnaise to taste (I probably used about 3 Tablespoons) and sprinkle on some chipotle chili powder (I probably used ¼-½ teaspoons).
- Mix and enjoy! Be careful with the chipotle—it does have a kick, so sprinkle it on gradually, and taste-test as you go.
I now make guacamole without the traditional citrus and garlic because one of my daughters has a food sensitivity to them. To compensate for the special sweet-and-sour tang that lime (my preference) or lemon provides, I use a splash of apple cider vinegar. Fresh onion adds a lot of zing, but the onion powder uniquely adds to the taste.
- 1 avocado
- 2 Tablespoons minced fresh onion (adjust to taste)
- 1 capful apple cider vinegar
- Onion powder
- Salt and pepper
- Peel and cut avocado into a bowl with minced onion.
- Add one capful of apple cider vinegar, onion powder, salt and pepper.
- Mash with a fork or a pastry blender.
To assemble the taco: Just load it on! In theory, this is finger food, but I usually overload my tortilla and end up eating it with a fork and knife.