September 04, 2017

blackened fish street tacos

We love food trucks and carts! We find ourselves hypnotized by the wafts of good food in the air! Wherever we go – NYC, Seaside, or even locally in downtown Fayetteville – we find a food truck. These blackened fish street tacos with pickled cucumbers and onions are hand-held, sloppy, little numbers that make us think of beach vacations and summertime visits to our favorite cities! The fish is tender and spicy, but the sweet vinegar-y cucumbers cool down each bite. Roll up your sleeves because you’re sure have sauce drip down to your elbows!

with pickled cucumbers and onions
Makes 8-10 little tacos

-for the cucumbers and onions-
1 english cucumber, thinly sliced
1 large red onions, halved and thinly sliced
1-2 cloves garlic, mashed
¾ cup apple cider vinegar
¾ cup sugar
1 cup water
1 tablespoon salt

-for the tangy cream sauce-
2 tablespoons of reserved pickling liquid
6 tablespoons of mayonnaise
Juice of one lime
Pinch of salt
Several dashes of hot sauce

-for the fish tacos-
4 tilapia filets
4 tablespoons blackening seasoning
Vegetable oil for sauteeing
20 street taco-sized corn tortillas
Shredded monterey jack cheese, sliced avocado, lime juice wedges, and cilantro for garnishing

In a medium saucepan, combine the vinegar, sugar, water, and salt. Bring to a boil; stir in the sliced cucumbers and onions. Continue to boil for about 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in the mashed garlic. Allow to cool for 30 minutes at room temperature, reserve 2 tablespoons of the liquid, and refrigerate the cucumbers and onions for at least an hour until chilled.

In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the creamy taco sauce. Taste and adjust. It should be creamy, tangy, with a little heat from the hot sauce.

For the fish tacos, season all sides of the tilapia filets with blackening seasoning. Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat swirled with oil, sear tilapia for 3 minutes on each side. Remove to a cutting board and use two forks to pull fish apart into big, rustic bites.

Stack two corn tortillas and fill with fish, pickled cucumbers and onions, a drizzle of tangy cream sauce, shredded cheese, avocado slices, and cilantro. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing.