Just the other day, I decided that I
wanted to have fish for dinner. But before going to the market, I made
one last check of my freezer... and discovered a couple of forgotten
walleyes. Unfortunately, these fish had reached a freezer age
beyond which most folks won’t even want to open them. Now, I know that
usually I have no problem with fish that have been in the freezer for an
excessive amount of time -- if they have been properly prepared for the
long, cold rest -- especially if I am the one who packaged them! But
since these were “on the edge” of prime time, I thought that I would try
something different, just in case the fillets weren’t at their
peak of flavor.
Now, I had heard of – and
seen on several menus – fish tacos, but I had never tasted any. Sounded
a bit strange at first, but the idea grew on me and I decided to try to
make some. I’m glad I did, because the results were incredibly good and
the recipe is really easy:
1 Taco Kit, complete with crispy
corn tortilla shells and taco seasoning packet
4 small to medium sized fish fillets
(~ 12-16 oz. total)
Soak fillets -- I used walleye
this time, but I’ll guarantee you that just about any fish will work
well -- in an egg and milk mixture for about an hour to help revive
the flavor if the fish have been frozen for awhile. (Fresh
fish require less soaking time.) Cut off and discard any
visible freezer burned flesh.
Thoroughly mix 1 package of
your favorite taco seasoning (I like Ortega best -- it has less
sodium in it…) with about ¼ cup of flour and ¼ cup of bread crumbs
in a large plastic bag.
Remove the fish from the egg
wash, cut it into bite-size chunks and put all the pieces in a
plastic bag with the taco-seasoned flour mix; shake well to fully
and evenly coat the fish.
To a pre-heated/very hot pan
(non-stick works best, but a heavy-gauge aluminum pan or cast iron
works quite well too) add about two tablespoons of olive oil and a
tablespoon of butter. Note: heat the pan first and then
add the oil and butter!
Add the fish pieces to the pan
-- a few at a time until all pieces are in the pan -- and allow them
to get well-browned on all sides. The best way to do this is
to move the pan back and forth while moving the fish pieces with a
wooden or non-stick spatula.
Place several pieces of fish
into warmed taco shells, add your favorite fixin's, top with some
salsa and there you have it!
The meal was quick and easy to prepare and the results
were outstanding! We like to buy dried pinto beans and make our
own refried's; along with some freshly sautéed zucchini, onions and
mushrooms, they make a great addition to this meal. Next time I
head to the lake, I'm bringing along a taco kit and betting that the
fresh perch from the lake will really make for a great fish taco meal.