Saturday, February 20, 2010

Baja-Style Fried Fish Tacos

t's threatening to rain again, and weirdly I'm not craving slow cooked stews, or big bowls of chili. All I can think of is summer food, namely Baja-style fried fish tacos. If you've never had a fish taco the way they make them in Baja you don't know what you're missing.

Okay, admittedly I’ve never been to Baja. But taco stands that serve Baja style fish tacos are a staple in Southern California these days. I swear you can almost imagine yourself standing on the beach in San Felipe when you eat these. Served with an icy cold Mexican beer, there is nothing better.

Serves 4


1 cup pale beer

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
Vegetable oil, for frying
1 pound boned, skinned white fish (cod, catfish, halibut)

24 warm corn tortillas
1/2 head shredded cabbage

Lime wedges


½ cup good mayonnaise
2 tablespoons milk

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice

1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder, or to taste

3 ripe plum tomatoes, seeded, finely chopped

1/4 cup small white onion, finely chopped

3 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

1 jalapeƱo, seeded, finely chopped

Juice of 2 limes

Kosher salt & freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

In a bowl, whisk together flour, salt and cayenne pepper. Whisk in the beer, blending well, making sure there are no lumps. Batter should be the consistency of thick pancake batter. Rinse fish and pat dry. Cut into 2-inch pieces.

Heat a large, heavy bottomed frying pan or Dutch oven with enough vegetable oil to create a 1-inch depth. Heat the oil over high heat to 375 degrees on a deep fry thermometer. Dip fish pieces in beer batter and lift out, draining briefly. Gently slide coated fish into oil, a few pieces at a time. Adjust heat to maintain oil temperature. Fry until golden brown, about 2 minutes.

Remove fish to a paper towel-lined platter using a slotted spoon or Chinese strainer. Continue until all fish pieces have been fried. To assemble, stack two tortillas in your hand. Add a few pieces of fish, chipotle sauce, pico de gallo and top with shredded cabbage. Spritz with a squeeze of lime, fold in half and enjoy!


  1. oh my god you must be trying to kill me! these look AMAZING! as someone who has spent much time in Mexico and in Baja, let me tell you these tacos look like they are every bit as delicious as the real thing!

  2. love your photography and these fish tacos!
    will always check back for more of your delicious recipes :D