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Fried Fish Tacos Deluxe


  • 1 can vegetarian refried beans, spicy-style

  • Hot sauce

  • 1/2 head green cabbage, shredded

  • 1 small red onion, quartered and very thinly sliced

  • 3 limes, divided

  • Salt

  • Canola oil, for frying

  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless, firm, mild fish such as red snapper, cut into 2-inch planks

  • 1 tablespoon Old Bay seafood seasoning

  • 1 1/2 cups flour, plus some for dredging

  • 1/2 cup cornstarch

  • 3 tablespoons sesame seeds

  • A palmful of chili powder

  • 1 bottle Negra Modelo beer (12 ounces)

  • 1 large egg

  • 16 corn tortillas

  • Chopped tomatoes, for topping (optional)

  • Sour cream, for topping (optional)

  • Sport peppers or sliced pickled jalapeno peppers, optional garnish


Place the refried beans in small pan or pot with about 1/3 cup water and some hot sauce. Heat the beans and reduce the heat to low to keep them warm.

Combine the cabbage with the onion and dress with the juice of two limes and some salt, then reserve or chill. Cut the remaining lime into small wedges to pass at the table for topping the tacos.

Pre-heat the oven to 250˚F and arrange a cooling rack over a baking sheet to keep the fish crisp in the oven while frying up batches.

Pour about 2 inches of fry oil into a largem heavy pot such as a Dutch oven. Heat over medium to medium-high heat. When the oil is ready for frying, bubbles will surround and flow from a submerged wooden spoon handle.

Meanwhile, pat the fish dry and season with the Old Bay and salt.

Whisk together the flour, cornstarch, sesame seeds, chili powder, a couple of healthy pinches of salt, beer and egg.

Pour a little more flour onto a plate for dredging. Dust the fish in plain flour, then dip in the batter and fry until golden brown and crispy, about 3-4 minutes. Do not crowd the pot and be sure to allow the oil to reheat before frying the second batch of fish. Place the cooked fish in the oven to keep it crisp.

Heat a small, dry skillet over medium-high heat and heat the corn tortillas.

To eat, use a healthy dab of spicy refried beans to "glue" two tortillas together. This will prevent ripping of the soft corn tortillas. Fill the tacos with cabbage, fish, Tomato-Lime Salsa or chopped tomatoes, sour cream or Green Garlic Sour Cream and garnish with hot peppers. Pass the lime wedges at the table.