It was one of those days. Before lunch even rolled around, I thought "I need fish tacos tonight." Now, I have made many a fish taco following recipes, and they've mostly been fairly, well, "meh," not delivering the punch of flavor I expect from my fish tacos. Bland fish tacos are basically despair in a tortilla.
So that's what I worked hard to avoid, starting with the fish. I know tilapia seems to be the go-to for taco recipes these days, but in my not at all humble opinion, mahi mahi is superior in every way. I also happened to have mahi in my freezer. So get yourself some mahi, or another firm white fish. From there, slather a hefty amount of spice rub on the fish, and let it sink in for a bit in the fridge. Forget just shredding some cabbage: shred it, then add chopped green onions, cilantro, and lime juice. Mash half an avocado with some crema (Mexican sour cream). Fold it all together in a flour tortilla with another squeeze of lime (and maybe just a few dashes of hot sauce), and rejoice because you've finally made fish tacos you actually love.
fish tacos with cabbage slaw and avocado crema
Makes enough for 4 people, so adapt accordingly
1 pound mahi mahi fillets
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground paprika
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle
2 cups shredded purple cabbage
2 green onions (scallions), sliced thin
1/4 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
juice of 1/2 a lime
1/2 avocado, peeled and mashed
1/2 cup crema (or sour cream)
Olive oil, for cooking
Combine the kosher salt, pepper, cumin, paprika, garlic, and chipotle in a small bowl. Rub the spice mix into the mahi mahi on all sides. Chill for about 15-30 minutes in the fridge.
Meanwhile, mix together the cabbage, green onions, and cilantro in a medium bowl. Add the lime juice and toss to coat. In another bowl, whisk together the avocado and crema until well-blended.
Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a nonstick pan over medium-high heat, swirling to coat. Add the fish, and cook 4-6 minutes on each side, until it is cooked through and flakes with a fork. Remove the fish from the pan. As the fish cooks, heat the tortillas in a hot, dry pan.
Flake the fish into pieces. Assemble the tacos with fish pieces and slaw. Top with crema and a squeeze of lime. Serve with hot sauce and lime wedges.