Fish Tacos

Earlier this evening, I read Jenny Rosenstrach’s “Refrigerator Dump” post on Dinner: A Love Story (  I should mention that in my humble opinion, Jenny is a rock star.  I relate to almost everything she writes, enjoy her recipes and am envious of all that she’s accomplished.  Like me, she comes from a magazine publishing background but she has created a wildly successful blog, published a fantastic cookbook (which I read cover to cover in three sittings), and writes a monthly column for Bon Appetit.  To say that she’s my hero is nothing short of the truth.

So, it’s no surprise that I appreciated the account of her weekly refrigerator assessment. I run through pretty much the same routine every five days–take a good look around, get rid of anything that must go and figure out how to save or repurpose whatever’s salvageable.  It’s a good feeling when you turn the 1/2 bag of cabbage, leftover from Tuesday’s stir fry, into cole slaw for Friday’s fish tacos.

If you’re looking for ways to reinvent something that’s often left sitting in your fridge: basmati rice, sliced flank steak, a couple of eggs…please mention it in the comments section below, because I’d love to take on the challenge of throwing out a few ideas.  In the meantime, I’ll share tonight’s fish taco recipe (I wasn’t kidding about the leftover cabbage, plus the tortillas from this week’s kimchi quesadillas and an avocado that was a bit too soft to the touch).  But please, bring on your leftovers!

Tilapia Tacos

Tilapia Tacos

Friday's Fish Tacos
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Slaw Dressing
  1. 4 Tbls cider vinegar
  2. 2 Tbls honey
  3. juice of 1/2 lime
  4. 1 tsp salt
  5. 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  1. 1/2 bag shredded cabbage
  2. 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
  3. 1/4 cup shredded carrot, optional
  4. handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
Taco Sauce
  1. 3 Tbls ranch dressing
  2. 1 Tbls sriracha sauce
  3. Fish
  4. 2 pieces of tilapia
  5. Old Bay (or any seasoning of choice)*
For Assembly
  1. Tortillas, warmed on the grill pan
  2. 1 avocado thinly sliced
  3. lime wedges, for serving
Slaw Dressing
  1. Mix ingredients to combine.
  1. Add slaw ingredients to the dressing bowl and toss to coat. Season with some salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside until ready to serve.
Taco Sauce
  1. Mix the dressing with sriracha and set aside for serving.
  1. Season tilapia with salt, pepper and any seasoning of choice: Old Bay; chipotle chili powder; or a combination of cumin, chili and coriander powders.
  2. Preheat a grill pan and coat with non-stick spray.
  3. When the pan is hot, sear fish for approximately 3 minutes on each side. Timing is somewhat dependent upon how hot your pan is and how thick your fish is. When the fish releases easily from the hot pan, it's time to flip. Once it flakes easily with a fork, it's done.
To Assemble
  1. To serve, layer each tortilla with some slaw, sliced avocados, flaked tilapia, drizzled sauce and a squeeze of lime.  Makes 4-6 tortillas, depending on how you stuff them!
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