Monday, June 20, 2011
Fast forward to the present: My friend Matt (who directs my cooking show) is also shooting a commercial for a local fish monger, North Shore Seafoods. I promise I will write more on that at some point, but take my word for it; it’s well worth a visit. Matt, who is allergic to fish (!) received some uber-fresh halibut and it was requested we turn it into tacos. Please, twist my arm. We made a feast, tacos, rice, beans, salsa, it was amazing, just as I remembered. We sat outside (I made steak tacos for Matt) and loved every second of it. It was so good I made it again for Emily's parents when we recently went back to visit. I hope you all find this recipe as memorable as I have.
2 pounds fresh white fish (cod, shark, halibut, etc.), trimmed of skin, cut into ¾" strips (cut so they will fit into a tortilla)
2 cups flour
2 tablespoons salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2-3 cups beer
1 quart peanut oil
½ cup sour cream
¼ cup mayo
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon cumin
Juice from half of a lime
1 head cabbage, finely shredded
2 limes, cut into wedges
Fresh salsa or pico de gallo
Guacamole or avocado slices (optional)
2 dozen fresh corn tortillas (buy at a local Mexican grocer)
To make the crèma combine all ingredients in a small bowl, season to taste with additional cumin. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 1 day. Warm the tortillas in a toaster oven wrapped in foil
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Use a fry or candy thermometer to maintain the oil temperature at 375°F. Meanwhile, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and cornstarch in a bowl. Add 2 cups of the beer and whisk until smooth. If batter is too thick, add more beer until thin but not extremely watery.
Dredge 1 filet of fish in batter, letting excess drip off, and place in hot oil. Depending on the size of the pot you can fry 3-4 pieces at a time. Do not fry more at a time as the oil temperature will drop significantly. Fry fish, turning occasionally, until brown and crisp, 4-5 minutes. Transfer to wire rack covered with paper towel to drain. Return oil to temperature and repeat with remaining fish.
To serve, spread a small amount of crèma on a tortilla followed by a piece of fish, a squeeze of lime, cabbage, and pico de gallo. Enjoy!