Growing up in a small costal town was unreal. My brothers and I partook in the usual beach sports and activities, although my brother Joe was almost a fish. He spent most of his time in the ocean: surfing, diving, fishing, swimming, living. Once lobster season opened, he would free dive into the kelp beds and pull up one or two for dinner. He would cook them up on his outdoor stove and make a dreamy garlic-butter sauce. We all got very spoiled when it came to eating fresh seafood.
These fish tacos make me think of summers at home with my family. My brother manning the fryer, the sun setting late, the dogs in the yard, neighborhood kids playing past dark. Its amazing a fish taco could say so much.
¾ cup flour, plus more for pre-dredge
¼ cup cornstarch
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¾-1 cup IPA (I used Sierra Nevada’s Beer Camp)
1 - 1¼ pounds mild white fish (I used cod)
Salt and pepper to taste
Canola oil for frying
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, and pepper. Add most of the beer (I ended up using just a bit over ¾ cup) and whisk until smooth. You want the batter to be liquid, but still thick enough to evenly coat the fish.
In a deep fry pan or deep skillet, heat at least 1 inch of canola oil to 375 degrees. While the oil is coming to temperature, pat the fish dry and season each side with salt and pepper. Fill a shallow dish with flour. Working with 3 in-4 in pieces, first dredge the fish in flour, then dip into the beer batter.
Working in batches, carefully drop a few pieces of the beer battered fish into the hot oil. Fry the fish, turning the pieces until they are golden brown. Drain fish on cooling racks set over paper towels. Blot off the excess oil.
Once your fish is cooked, build your tacos as desired. I added the fish atop a homemade corn tortilla, followed by some fresh lemon juice, tomatoes, cilantro lime sauce, pepper jack cheese, and some extra chopped cilantro on top.
Source: Recipe slightly adapted from Taming of the Spoon