Taco Salad with Tortilla Chip Crusted Mahi Mahi
I was recently in Florida, enjoying fish tacos on the beach for a hefty $25, and unfortunately the tacos really sucked. The Mahi Mahi was very fishy. I think it was microwaved. The fish was soggy, and it was too generously topped with sour cream and guacamole. PLUS, this was all served in floppy flour tortillas that were withering away in my hands. I was sad. I wanted crunch, I wanted to taste the fresh fish underneath all of the toppings, and I wanted my $20 well spent. These tacos don’t *deserve* any press for their underwhelming performance, but here they are just so you can understand. Oh god, I just realized there was also unmelted cheese too. It was 86 degrees outside, HOW can you have unmelted cheese?!?! Now I’m sweating profusely. I need to change the subject….
Hi ok. What I was getting at is this. I am back in New York (woohoo :/) and I decided to bring some Mahi Mahi to my life. But this time, instead of being served on sour cream soaked tortillas, the Mahi Mahi is being encased in crispy corn tortilla chips (yum) and placed on a nutritious and delicious salad with all of the elements that make a great taco or burrito bowl: green leaf lettuce, black beans (can be subbed for pinto beans,) cilantro (say what you want about our lovely cilantro but I think she’s a star,) red onion (shallot, in this case,) lime crema, tomato and avocado. If you do not like salads, think about it this way: this is a deconstructed fish taco with guacamole on a plate. If you like fish tacos and guacamole, you will like this. I promise.
Before we get to ~*the recipe*~ I just want to note how Mahi Mahi tastes, for anyone who has never tried it. I also want to note that you can make this recipe with any fish, or even chicken breast. I am not 100% confident when I say this, but I do think it could work with red meat as well. Try it out and let me know.
Mahi mahi is what I like to call a “medium bodied” fish. What I mean by this is that it is mildly fishy (not as mild as cod, but its definitely not fish forward) and it also has a firm texture, with a bit of flakiness. It’s not as firm as swordfish or tuna, but it’s not as flaky as cod. It’s right in the middle. It’s a safe bet for seafood lovers, it’s not a safe bet for seafood haters. Seafood haters would prefer chicken or cod with this recipe (boring but you have to please boring eaters sometimes and that is ok.)
|For the Mahi Mahi:|
|2 Mahi Mahi fish fillets|
|1/2cup gluten-free all purpose flour|
|1cup corn tortilla chips|
|For the salad:|
|3cups green leaf lettuce|
|1can black beans|
|Juice of 1 lime|
|1tbsp olive oil|
|Extra tortilla chips|
|For the lime crema:|
|1/2cup sour cream|
|Juice of 1 lime|
|Zest of half a lime|
Prep the salad ingredients and set aside.
Place the oven rack to the second highest level, and set the oven broiler too high. Please note that all ovens racks are different, and I made this recipe with an electric broiler. If you have a gas broiler, make sure there is ample space between the fish and the flame, so the chips don't burn. If it feels too close, it probably is.
In a large bowl or dish, whisk together the egg and water to make egg wash. Pour the flour into another large dish or bowl and place it on the right side of the egg wash. (If you're left handed, place it on the other side!) Pour the crushed corn tortilla chips into another bowl and place it on the other side of the egg wash.
Thoroughly dry off the fish fillets with a paper towel. This helps the flour adhere to the fish, for extra crispiness.
Choose one hand to be your dry hand, and one hand to be your wet hand. With the dry hand, dip the fillet in the flour until it's fully coated on all sides.
Pick up the fish with your dry hand and transfer it to your wet hand. With the wet hand, dip the fish into the egg wash until it's fully coated in the egg mixture.
Place the fish into the bowl of crushed corn tortilla chips. Use the dry hand to sprinkle tortilla chips around the sides of the fish until it's fully coated. Then, put the fully coated fish onto the cutting board. Repeat with the next fillet.
Season an oven-safe skillet with olive oil, enough to lightly coat the bottom of the pan. Place the fillets in the pan, skin side down if they have skin on, and broil for 10 minutes.