We had yet another summer-themed dinner this Saturday (I think it’s becoming a trend) to celebrate the “Spring Forward hour change”. I never quite understood the concept of changing your clocks, and I don’t really think it actually saves much energy for non-farming folks like me. And to be honest, switching my clocks an hour back in the winter just makes me more depressed… So I was eternally grateful that the sun will officially set 1 hour later from Sunday on, which means that we are thaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat much closer to summer. (Watch me love Summer for the first month and complain about the heat afterwards.)
Anyhoo, I needed an excuse to make some yummy fish tacos, and having something to celebrate just makes food taste better. So I whipped up a Cajun seasoning for my blackened fish, had my flour and butter ready for some homemade Tortillas, and it was party in the kitchen time. You can save a lot of time using store-bought tortillas, but homemade tortillas just taste THAT much better (plus no added preservatives!).
Lard is traditionally used for tortillas (try bacon fat, it adds a layer of smokiness! SUPER TASTY), but margarine or butter can be substituted. Tortillas made with lard tend to be lighter, but I was too lazy to render bacon fat, and I didn’t have any lard on hand, so I used butter instead.
As for the blackened fish, I used tilapia this time. I like using lean white fish for this recipe, but salmon also works quite well for this recipe.
So here you are, another Nommy Noms recipe. Try it and let me know what you think!
Homemade Soft-Shelled Tortillas
Yield: 16 Large or 24 Small Prep Time: 25 Minutes Cook Time: 1-2 Mins per Tortilla
- All-purpose flour —————————————– 4 Cups
- Salt ——————————————————— 1 tsp
- Baking powder ——————————————- 2 tsp
- Lard/Butter/Margarine (room temp) —————— 2 tbs
- Hot water (just below boiling) ————————– 1 1/2 Cup
The Fun Part:
- Whisk all the dry ingredients together
- Add butter to the flour mixture and rub in butter until well incorporated (it’s done when you can’t feel the butter lumps, don’t expect it to result in a corn-mealy texture).
- Pour hot water gradually in the flour mixture and mix well with a wooden spoon.
- Knead dough on a floured surface until smooth and elastic (about 5 minutes).
- Flatten dough into a circle and divide into 24 pieces for small tortillas, 16 pieces for large tortillas.
- Roll each portion into a ball and roll out on a floured circle into a circle. (Keep the rest of the dough from drying by putting a wet kitchen towel over it, or plastic wrap)
- Heat an un-oiled skillet on medium-high heat (preferably cast-iron for even heat distribution). Place a round of tortilla on the skillet.
- Flip when bubbles form, the flipped side should be golden brown and slightly charred.
- Keep warm in a tortilla warmer, or any bowl with a good lid on.
Blackened Fish Tacos
Prep & Cook Time: 10 Minutes Cook Time: 5-10 Minutes
- Cajun Seasoning (recipe to follow) ———————— enough to coat fish ~ 1/2 cup
- Lean white fish (I used Tilapia) —————————– 3-4 large fillets
- Olive oil ——————————————————— ~ 3 Tablespoons
- Tomatoes (medium)——————————————- ~4
- Romaine lettuce———————————————— 1 medium head
The Fun Part:
- Pat fillet dry and drizzle one side with olive oil, sprinkle generously with Cajun seasoning.
- Let fish sit for about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, slice tomatoes and chop lettuce.
- Heat a skillet with with 2 tablespoons of oil, add fish (spiced side down) just before oil smokes. Sprinkle spice on the “unspiced” side of fish when fish is in the pan.
- Let sear for about 3-4 minutes per side, or when it turns golden brown.
- Add lettuce, tomatoes and red onions on the soft tortilla shell. Place a fillet of blackened fish on the tortilla. If desired, add some spicy lime mayo (recipe to follow).
Yields: More than a quarter cup Prep Time: Uhh… Super quick?
- Ground paprika ——————– 2 Tbs
- Ground cayenne pepper ——— 1 Tbs
- Onion powder ———————– 1 Tbs
- Salt ———————————— 2 Tsp
- Ground white pepper ————– 1/2 Tsp
- Ground black pepper ————– 1/2 Tsp
- Dried thyme ————————– 1/4 Tsp
- Dried Basil —————————- 1/4 Tsp
- Dried Oregano ———————– 1/4 Tsp
The Fun Part:
Spicy Lime Mayo
- Mayonaise ————————— 2 Tbs
- Lime Juice ————————— 2 tsp
- Sugar ——————————— 1 tsp
- Tabasco sauce ——————— a few dashes, to taste
- Salt & Pepper ———————– as needed
The Fun Part
- Place everything together and mix well (everything is to taste, so feel free to adjust the portions).