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Baja Fish Tacos with Cabbage Salsa

(adapted from Tequila: The Book, by Ann and Larry Walker)
~ Barry Nelson, NRDC senior policy analyst, San Francisco


  • Fish:
  • 1 1/2 pounds Pacific halibut, farmed striped bass, mahi mahi or other firm, sustainable fish
  • 1/2 cup flour or breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Dash of cayenne pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 4 tablespoons olive, canola or corn oil
  • 12 corn tortillas (handmade are best)
  • Salsa:
  • 1 small head of cabbage
  • Juice of 1 orange and 1 lime
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon tequila
  • 1 teaspoon oregano, crumbled
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • 1 canned jalapeno chili, minced


  1. Remove the tough outer leaves of cabbage and shred the head into a large bowl. Add remaining salsa ingredients and stir. Set aside for at least 30 minutes while you make the fish.
  2. Cut the fish into strips 1 inch wide. Combine the flour, salt, cumin, black and cayenne peppers in a shallow bowl. Pour milk into another shallow bowl. Dip the fish in the milk and toss the fish in the flour mixture.
  3. Heat the oil in a skillet over high heat. When the oil is hot, add the fish and fry, turning once, until it is golden brown on both sides (this takes only a few minutes). Toss in the garlic as the fish fries. Remove fish and dry on paper towels.
  4. Warm the tortillas in foil in the oven or in a dry skillet on the stovetop.
  5. Serve the tortillas in one bowl, the fish in another and the cabbage salsa in a third.

Serves 6.


If you don't have time to make the cabbage salsa, use any good salsa, a little sour cream and a squeeze of lime.


This meal is fast and easy. It came in handy when my wife and I were kayaking in the Sea of Cortez. We caught a large squid in a tidepool with our hands -- just before the gulls got to him. We then had possibly the best dinner of my life -- sitting on the beach, watching the sun set and then being dazzled as phosphorescent plankton lit up the tiny waves breaking on the beach.

More Tasty (and Sustainable) Seafood Recipes

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