My trip to Costa Rica provoked a constant craving for fish tacos. You can put anything in a tortilla and I'm happy, but fish tacos are the epitome of a perfect dish (I may be a bit of a fish tacophile).
This approach is very straightforward as I believe that good tacos shouldn't require much embellishment. One modification I made is replacing the traditional crema (or sour cream) with a vegan alternative made from cashews and avocado. I realize that these tacos are absolutely not vegan, but I actually much prefer this component. It adds just a slight nutty richness, but is surprisingly an excellent comparison to cream. By all means, if this scares you away, stick with sour cream or even replace the cashews with yogurt. Though if you aren't familiar with using cashews other than a solo snack, I encourage you to try it.
Now what better companion to a taco than a margarita? I'm on the spicy infusion bandwagon and love the pairing with a contrasting flavor, in this case my favorite citrus: grapefruit. Usually the habanero would be infused into the liquor, though with limited time, I made a quick habanero and honey simple syrup. The combination couldn't be more compatible and a perfect accompaniment to the tacos.
5 tilapia filets
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp salt
for the cashew crema-
1 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight
1/4 cup of fresh lime juice, about 3 limes
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
red cabbage, sliced thinly
radish, sliced thinly
1. Make the crema. Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.
2. Combine the cumin, cayenne, and salt and dust the tilapia liberally. Add oil to a nonstick skillet to coat and heat to high. Add two tilapia filets and cook for about 3 minutes on one side, flip and cook for 2 minutes on the other side or until cooked through. Remove and add to a paper towel lined plate to absorb any oil. Continue cooking the others.
3. Heat tortillas and serve the tacos with garnishes.
1 cup freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, about 2 grapefruits
1 cup of freshly squeezed lime juice, about 12 limes
3/4 - 1 cup of tequila (depending on taste)
for the habanero simple syrup-
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup water
2 habanero peppers, sliced
1. Make the simple syrup. Combine the honey and water in a small saucepan and bring just to a boil. Add the sliced habanero peppers and remove from the heat. Allow to infuse for at least 30 minutes. Strain and place in the fridge to cool.
2. Combine grapefruit juice, lime juice, tequila, and simple syrup. Pour over ice and serve.