New York right now has a strange feeling to it. When I walked out of work today, the streets were quietly abuzz with the sounds of people sitting outside, eating and drinking. The light was soft and the air was warm and hazy. It smelled of salt water and summer approaching. It was like walking out into a warm evening in late June – except it’s still March. The serene calmness of 7th avenue was so strange at this time of year, when often in March it is rainy, blustery cold and gray.
But it seems like people innately respond more to a feeling in the air than a date on a calendar. And now that it’s warm outside and light until nearly 8 pm, there’s really only one thing that I want to do – sit outside, drink an icy margarita and eat Mexican food. This craving is like clockwork, and literally every year at the end of spring / beginning of summer, it’s what I want to eat and drink. Nevermind that spring just started – the weather dictates this food craving, and the weather says it’s margarita time.
I still have yet to get to my happy hour margaritas and nachos. But in the meantime, Jon and I bought a little tortilla press and came up with these awesome, delicious fried fish tortillas. Try them or make your own version, but either way, have them with a cold margarita and a slice of lime.
(Makes 15 regular sized tortillas or 30 bitesized)
For the Tortillas:
1 ¾ c Masa Harina flour
1 1/8 c water
- Whisk together flour and water to combine.
- Turn out dough onto a clean surface and knead until malleable.
- Rest, covered in plastic, for 30 minutes.
- When dough is ready, roll out into 30 even sized balls and flatten with tortilla press.
- Cook in a hot skillet with a very small amount of oil.
For the Fish:
1 whole snapper, cleaned and filleted
½ c milk
2 cloves garlic, crushed
Scallion greens, sliced
Zest of 1 lime
Salt and pepper
½ c flour, well seasoned
- Cut the fish into 1” x 1” square pieces. Soak in milk, garlic, scallion greens, lime zest, cayenne and salt and pepper.
- Let fish soak for at least 30 minutes and up to several hours. When ready to fry the fish, dredge in flour and fry in an inch of oil until cooked through and golden brown, about 3-4 minutes.
For the Slaw:
1 small cucumber, julienne
4 radishes, julienne
5 pearl onions, pickled and julienne
- Julienne the vegetables. We had pickled pearl onions on hand, but you can use raw shallots thinly sliced in their place.
- Dress slaw lightly with olive oil, lime juice, salt and pepper.
For the Aioli:
1 egg yolk
1 tsp Dijon
1 c olive oil
Juice of ½ lime
1 Serrano chile, zested
1 clove garlic, zested
Salt and pepper
- Make a basic mayonnaise with the yolk, Dijon and olive oil.
- Add lime juice, zested chile and garlic, and season well with salt and pepper.
For the bite, cook off your tortillas and fish and assemble while warm. Eat immediately!
© 2012 Jonathan Meter and Jessica Hertle