Throwdown's Fish Tacos

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr 40 min
  • Prep: 45 min
  • Inactive: 15 min
  • Cook: 40 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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Tomatillo-Avocado Relish:

2 large tomatillo, husked and rinsed and diced

1 ripe Hass avocado, halved, pitted and diced

1 or 2 jalapeno or serrano peppers, finely diced (depending on how spicy you like it)

2 limes, juiced

Extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 cup freshly chopped cilantro leaves

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Smoked Tomato Salsa Crema:

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

2 teaspoons chipotle in adobo puree

3 plum tomatoes, grilled or roasted until blackened, halved, seeded and diced

1/4 cup finely diced red onion

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 tablespoon finely chopped Mexican oregano

3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Pinch salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 cup sour cream or creme fraiche

Roasted Habanero-Mango Hot Sauce:

2 tablespoons canola oil

1 small Spanish onion, chopped

2 very ripe mangoes, halved and flesh chopped

*1 habanero, roasted and chopped (See Cook's Note)

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

1/4 cup water

2 tablespoons clover honey

Pinch salt and freshly ground black pepper

Red Cabbage Slaw:

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/4 cup orange juice

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons clover honey

1/4 cup freshly chopped basil leaves

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup canola oil

2 cups finely shredded napa cabbage

2 cups finely shredded red cabbage

1 large carrot, peeled and julienned


3 (8-ounce) red snapper or mahi mahi fillets

Canola oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup reserved dressing, from the slaw

8 (6-inch) flour or corn tortillas

Cilantro leaves


  1. Combine the tomatillo, avocado, jalapeno and lime juice in a medium bowl. Drizzle with a little olive oil, add cilantro and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.

For the salsa crema:

  1. Put the vinegar and chipotle puree in a food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until slightly smooth.
  2. Put the sour cream into a medium bowl, add the salsa and stir to combine.

For the hot sauce:

  1. Heat the oil in a medium saute pan over high heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the mango, *habanero, vinegar and 1/4 cup water and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mango is very soft, about 15 minutes.
  2. Transfer to a food processor; add the honey and salt and pepper, to taste, and pulse until smooth. Strain through a mesh strainer into a bowl. Let cool to room temperature before serving. The sauce can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for 1 week. Bring to room temperature before serving.

For the slaw:

  1. Put the lemon juice, orange juice, mustard, honey, basil and salt and pepper, to taste, in a blender and blend until smooth. With the motor running, add the oil until emulsified. Reserve 1/4 cup of the dressing for the fish.
  2. Combine the cabbage and carrot in a large bowl; add half of the dressing and toss to coat. Add more dressing and salt and pepper, if needed.

For the fish:

  1. Preheat the grill to high or grill pan over high heat.
  2. Brush both sides of the fish with oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Grill until golden brown and slightly charred on both sides and just cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Remove to a plate and drizzle the fish with the reserved dressing. Let cool slightly, then using a fork, flake into large pieces.
  3. Grill the tortillas until slightly charred and just warmed through, about 5 seconds per side. Transfer the tortillas on a flat surface and fill the center of each with some of the fish, red slaw, salsa, hot sauce and cilantro leaves...fold and eat.

Cook’s Note

* Heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Put the habanero in a small ovenproof saute pan, drizzle with a little canola oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Roast until charred on all sides. Remove the stem, skin and seeds.

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