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Playing Fried Fish Tacos Deluxe


  • 1 can spicy, vegetarian refried beans
  • Hot sauce
  • 1/2 head of green cabbage, shredded
  • 1 small red onion, quartered and very thinly sliced
  • 3 limes
  • Salt
  • Canola oil for frying
  • 1 1/2 pounds of 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
  • Sport peppers or sliced pickled jalapeno peppers, optional garnish


Serves: 4


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

Combine cabbage with onions and dress with juice of 2 limes and some salt, then reserve or chill. Cut remaining lime into small wedges to pass at table for topping tacos.

Preheat oven to 250F and arrange a cooling rack over a baking sheet to keep fish crisp in oven while frying up batches.

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

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

Whisk together flour and 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 fish in plain flour then dip in batter and fry to golden brown and crispy, about 3-4 minutes. Do not crowd the pot and allow oil to reheat before frying second batch of fish. Place cooked fish in oven to keep 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 2 tortillas together. This will prevent ripping of the soft corn tortillas. Fill tacos with cabbage, fish, salsa or chopped tomatoes, sour cream or green-garlic sour cream and garnish with hot peppers.