From: Rich McCormack Date: Tue, 16 Jul 1996 19:17:17 -0700 I hadnt thought about it -- fish tacos might not be familiar to many people outside the So. Calif. area (not including people south of the US/Mexico border, where fish tacos are more common). Basically, "authentic" fish tacos are fish fillets that are batter dipped, deep-fried, and wrapped up in a warmed, soft corn tortilla with salsa, shredded cabbage, a mayonnaise based white sauce, and a wedge of lime. The story of their "discovery" goes something like this: During his college days, Ralph Rubio used to travel south of the US/Mexico border for a little fun n suds during Spring Break. He found fish tacos being served at taco stands in San Felipe, Baja California. Deciding they might be as popular north of the border as they were south, Rubio started experimenting with different batters and a deep-fat fryer in 1982. He opened his first walk up Mexican food outlet in San Diego in 1983. Rubio now owns a chain of Mexican food resturants that stretches all over the county and probably beyond. As evidence of the popularity of fish tacos, many San Diego area resturants now serve at least one version; and, theyve gone beyond batter dipped deep-fried fish. They now include marinated grilled fish, shell fish, shark... Here are a couple of "recipes" I use for making fish tacos. Sorry about the vagueness, Im generally not a "recipe follower" type person, I mainly use recipes to prod my imagination. After that, I improvise... Deep-Fried Fish Tacos Cut fish fillets (cod, pollack, snapper, whatever) into approx. 2 - 3 ounce portions. Dust the fish lightly with flour and dip in batter (beer batter, fish n chips batter, tempura batter, whatever) that has been "spiced" to taste with Richs pico de gallo spice mix (it comes from a jar in my fridge containing an ever changing and evolving mix of left over spices thats heavy on chile powder). Deep fry the fish in hot oil (375 degrees) until crisp and golden brown. Serve with soft corn tortillas (warmed on a hot comal as needed), salsa fresca, shredded cabbage, tomatoe and avocado wedges, white sauce (I use a mix of mayonnaise and homemade yogurt, adding finely diced pickled jalepeno, serrano, and/or habanero chiles; diced capers; "kosher" crushed garlic; course ground black and/or Szechwan pepper; crushed dried red chile; or whatever I have on hand that suits my taste at the time), shredded jack and cheddar cheese, and lime wedges. My wife prefers fajita size flour tortillas rather than corn tortillas. Either or both are great for fish tacos. Grilled Fish Tacos Marinate shark or fish fillets (tuna, swordfish, halibut, mahi-mahi, or whatever) in lime juice and salsa picante (as "picante" as you wish) for about 30 minutes. Grill the fillets on a charcoal, electric, or gas BBQ grill (or a ribbed cast iron "grilling" pan on a stove top), sprinkling both sides with Richs pico de gallo spice mix (see above) during the grilling. The grill can be brushed with olive, corn, or peanut oil to keep the fish from sticking. When done, slice the fish into approx. 1/2 inch slices and serve as above. To be honest, when I suggest fish tacos to visiting friends or relatives from out of the So. Calif. area, I usually get some sort of a response such as "you aint gonna put no fish on MY taco." But those who try em usually like em... EAT-L Digest 15 July 96 From the EAT-L recipe list. Downloaded from G Internet, G Internet.