A few weeks ago, I promised to share my recipe for homemade pico de gallo. Rather than featuring just pico de gallo, I thought I would also include one of my favorite uses for it – easy fish tacos. I know “easy” and “fish tacos” do not seem like they could go together but I am here to say that they can.
For me, fish tacos require three components – fish, slaw, and salsa. Although I love fish tacos with fried beer battered fish, deep frying requires a lot more time for cooking and clean up. In this simplified version, the fish is seasoned, coated in flour and then pan fried. It is much easier than deep frying and still flavorful. The slaw uses a pre-packaged coleslaw mix tossed with mayo and lime juice. How easy is that? For the salsa, you could use a jarred salsa or store bought pico de gallo if you are short on time. However, if you can, try making your own pico de gallo. It is easier than you might think.
Making homemade pico de gallo always escaped me until I watched a good friend of mine make his in the food processor. He just threw everything in and a few pulses later, he had made the most wonderful pico de gallo. The key is to not overdo it with the food processor. Just a few quick pulses is all that is needed.
Make some extra pico de gallo to serve with chips on the side and you will have a happy family.
- 3 ripe, firm tomatoes, quartered
- ½ medium white onion, quartered
- ½ large jalapeno pepper, seeded, cut into large pieces
- 1 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Juice of 1 lime
- 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
- Juice of 1 lime
- 3 cups (half of one 6-ounce bag) coleslaw mix
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound firm white fish fillets (such as cod or tilapia), skin and bones removed, cut into large pieces of equal thickness
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- Salt to taste
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 6 corn or flour tortillas, warmed until pliable
- Chopped cilantro, for serving, optional
- Lime wedges, for serving, optional
- Put tomatoes, onion, jalapeño, cilantro leaves, salt, and lime juice in a food processor and pulse 3-4 times. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Pulse again until pico de gallo is at desired consistency, scraping down the sides after every 2-3 pulses.
- Transfer pico de gallo to serving bowl and adjust salt and lime juice to taste. Let stand while making the slaw and fish.
- Whisk the mayonnaise and lime juice together in a medium bowl until smooth. Add the coleslaw mix and mix well.
- Season with salt and pepper. Let stand while cooking the fish.
- Heat the oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat until the oil is hot but not smoking.
- Season the fish pieces all over with the chili powder and salt. Place the flour on a plate. Coat each piece of fish in the flour, shaking off the excess.
- Add fish to the hot skillet and cook until golden brown on the bottom, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn and cook until golden brown on the second side and fish is cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes more, depending on type and thickness of the fish.
- Place desired amount of slaw on a warm tortilla, top with fish and a spoonful of pico de gallo. Sprinkle with cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lime juice, if desired, and serve.
Recipe adapted from Kitchen Life cookbook