Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Baja Fish Tacos

I shared grilled fish tacos a while ago. I love a good grilled fish taco. I also love a delicious fried fish taco. I'm really not picky; both are delicious. I realized I haven't shared a fried fish taco yet so here I am, sharing a yummy beer battered fish taco.

I feel like there are a lot of preferential elements that go into making a good fried fish taco. For me, I need the crunch of cabbage (preferably purple), a really good spicy and creamy sauce (preferably not mayonnaise based), and a spicy pico de gallo to cut the grease (preferably homemade). My favorite fish taco restaurant is in Miami (Alma Mexicana, anyone?) so it's not the most accessible. There aren't many delicious Mexican restaurants in my neighborhood so instead of resorting to subpar fare, I like to make it at home.
Ingredients [serves 4]:
2 fish filets (cod, tilapia, halibut, mahi-mahi, snapper, any good, fresh, white fish)
1/2 cup flour
1/2 to 1/3 cup beer
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
oil for frying
1 chipotle pepper (canned in adobo)
1/4 cup sour cream
2 to 3 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons lime juice (juice of 1 lime)
1 teaspoon hot sauce
+ tortillas
+ red cabbage, sliced
+ pico de gallo
+ avocado
+ hot sauce
+ lime wedges
+ guacamole

Monday, September 15, 2014

Pico de Gallo

My friend D got married yesterday! Congratulations to the happy couple. It was a lovely wedding and I participated as one of her bridesmaids. For her bachelorette just a few weekends ago, we all went to Miami. On our first day there, as soon as we hopped off the plane, we started contemplating lunch. I wanted to get Mexican so I suggested Alma Mexicana. It was delicious. So delicious, in fact, that even after I got back, I was craving Mexican food constantly.

One of the easiest recipes you can use to quash a Mexican food craving is pico de gallo. Pico de gallo, also known as salsa fresca, is a fresh medley of chopped vegetables with absolutely no cooking involved. There are several varieties but today, I'm sharing what I consider "the classic." You can spoon it over tacos, over eggs, or just go for it by dipping chips into the bowl. It's awesome.
Ingredients [yields approximately 3 cups]:
2 cups ripe tomato, diced (I like baby heirloom)
1 cup sweet onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, finely diced
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons lime juice (the juice of 1 lime)
salt to taste

Friday, September 12, 2014

Kalbi (2)

When Koreans introduce non-Koreans to Korean cuisine, we usually ease them into it by feeding them kalbi. It's one of those super crowd-pleasing dishes because it contains a lot of familiar flavors. It's a lot of fun sitting down at a Korean restaurant and grilling the meat at the table and eating everything family style. The experience is interactive and fun and v. social. But, the downside is that it's pretty expensive. You might pay around $40 per person to leave with a belly full of food. So, of course, I prefer making kalbi at home.

I shared a kalbi recipe almost three years ago but I thought it was time for an update. Honestly, when I make kalbi, I never use measuring spoons and cups. I just chuck this and that into a bowl, stir it up, give it a dip with my pinky to taste, and adjust if necessary. However, I did my best to measure this time so that I could share. Oh, and sometimes I'll add grated pear or apple for added natural sweetness but we don't always have those on hand, so I just wrote out the recipe using the most basic ingredients, ingredients that most people will have in their pantry at all times.
Ingredients [serves 6 to 8]:
2 lbs. short ribs
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons brown sugar
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon grated ginger
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon sesame oil
3 scallions, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon sesame seeds

scallion salad
15 scallions (about 3 bunches)
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper flakes (gochugaru)
1 teaspoon vinegar (rice wine, apple cider, pomegranate, something light and fruity)
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