September 20, 2009

Fish Tacos, Finally

I've been searching high and low for a delicious fish taco in Portland since I moved here in October 2007. Though I haven't tried them everywhere possible, I kind of gave up after a handful of disappointments. One place that is particularly known for their tacos have a taco that has delicious fish but it is smothered in fruity salsa, overwhelming the delicious fish. Another place that is more known for burritos has a very simple fish taco that has kind of skimpy fish and no sauce to be mentioned, only spicy cabbage. Total let down.

In any case, I finally got around to making my own fish tacos. With some help from V, her new dominos, our boyfriends and some tasty Tequila + Squirt drinks, we had a fantastic evening, the highlight of which was the fish tacos if you ask me! Totally fulfilled the craving and I can't wait to make these again.


The first thing you need for this, obviously, is a filet of fish. A white fish like halibut, cod, tilapia, or even catfish. I'd say get whatever is on sale. We had a little over a pound of halibut bought fresh from the farmer's market and it was a ton of fish. We each had three tacos and there was leftover fish.

The marinade for the fish was made up of:
Lime juice, lots of it.
A couple splashes of clear tequila. We used Sauza silver (the rest of the bottle was mixed with Squirt and drank by the four of us in the span of a few hours.)
Salt & Pepper
Chili Powder
Some diced up peppers, one step in spiciness below jalapenos
a few cloves of crushed garlic
a little olive oil

We let this marinate for about a half hour or so then put it in the oven at 350. It was a large chunk of fish so it took quite a while to cook all the way through, I think about 45 minutes or so.
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The next most important thing is the sauce. When the fish is almost done, whip up the sauce. Here is what we used in ours (this came from our pal Amy P!):
1 1/2 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream
1 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

(Please note that you use TEAspoons for the lime and vinegar, and tablespoons for the sour cream and cilantro. I sort of messed that up and had to send the boys out to get more sour cream to correct my mistake.)

Another important aspect of fish tacos is the pico de gallo. I like my tacos simple. A basic pico de gallo is just tomatoes, onions, cilantro, lime juice. V made this pico before she came over and she added some fresh yellow watermelon(last of the season!) which was amazing. It made the pico a tiny bit sweet but not overwhelmingly sweet. It still tasted like pico de gallo, not fruit salad, if you know what I mean.
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You also need:

-Cabbage. We had a head of red and a head of green.
-Guacamole if you are in the mood. (I just bought some fresh stuff from New Seasons, and in fact I didn't even put any on my tacos.)
-And Finally, Tortillas. I prefer Corn.
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V also made a really delicious Black bean and corn salad which was great on the side. Black beans, fresh corn from the farmers market, tomatoes, cilantro, olive oil, lime juice, chili powder, garlic powder, dash of cayenne, and some salt and pepper.
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So you put this all together, squeeze a little fresh lime juice on top, and you get the most delicious fish tacos ever made. The only thing I would have liked would have been a dash of hot sauce but they were still amazing without that!

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Voila! Or should I say Ole!? Either way, YUM!


  1. That fish was freakin' awesome. Must do that again!

  2. this makes me so hungry!!!! your blog is absolutely adorable! i love it!

  3. That fish looks really good, but don't you like the fish tacos at por que no?, I remember them being good.

  4. My problem with the fish tacos at por que no is that they are smothered in pineapple salsa. They are good, but doesn't really fix my fish taco craving and the pineapple completely overwhelms the fish. i love all their other tacos but i prefer their bowls actually.

  5. I like por que no's tacos, especially the shrimp ones. But Michelle, obviously, has higher standards when it comes to fish tacos. ACCEPT NO SUBSTITUTIONS. :)

    PS-When are you coming for a visit bro???

  6. Made these again last night! Suuuuper good!