Fish tacos are a popular way to serve fish. A wide range of recipes are available, utilizing fish species such as mahi, tuna, wahoo, mako shark, salmon, halibut, grouper, snapper, catfish, tilapia, and others. Fish tacos are simple to prepare, require few ingredients and make healthy meal choices.
Types of Fish
Preparation of fish tacos depends on the type of fish chosen. Some species have a very distinct flavor and is best cooked in a manner that doesn’t overwhelm the fish. These include species such as salmon and wahoo. Other fish with mild flavor lend themselves to a wider range of cooking styles, including grilling, blackening and broiling. Bland fish, such as tilapia also make excellent foundations of fish tacos since their flavor can be improved by adding spices and using more intense cooking techniques.
Fish Taco Ingredients
Depending on recipe variations or local preferences, fish tacos may contain additions such as lettuce, cabbage, cilantro, onion, sweet peppers, hot peppers, tomato, lime, mango, chili powder, cumin, sea salt, cheeses, sauces, etc.
Types of Tortillas
Tortillas are thin, round, flat, unleavened bread made from corn or flour. Corn tortillas are ancient, being made since the Aztec era. Corn tortillas are made by flattening the small balls of dough which are cooked on a griddle. The fat in corn tortillas comes from the masa, which is a coarse ground corn meal.
Corn tortillas are best cooked before they are eaten. To cook a corn tortilla, heat a skillet to medium high. Lay a tortilla on the hot pan and flip it with a spatula every 30 to 45 seconds. Cook until lightly toasted but still bendable.
Flour tortillas were introduced into Mexican culture when wheat flour was brought to the New World by the Spanish. Flour tortillas have slightly more calories, as a result of the combination of flour and a fat used to make the tortilla dough. Flour tortillas are available from 11-14 inches which is the standard for burritos. They also come in a variety of thicknesses, the thickest called “gordita-style.”
Authentic tortillas are low in fat and calories, but there are many variables when purchasing commercially produced versions. Some tortillas on the market contain lard although traditional recipes call for vegetable oil. There are about 80 calories per flour tortilla and up to 2.5 grams of fat.