There are words we use before certain foods meant to describe them. Carribean, Tex-Mex, Baja. What the heck is a Baja? It sounds like a word a surfer made up to send kudos to a friend. And maybe it is, as Baja refers to fresh flavors on Mexican food mainly coming out of the Baja California in Mexico. In my mind, I have already build an imaginary a place of beach bum dreams and can’t wait to retire to my surfside abode some day (based on 100% lack of Googling and pure stipulation – much like certain news channels). Either way, these Baja-style fish tacos are right on, dude. By not tossing the cabbage in sauce, it stays crispy until ready to serve and the slathering of homemade chipotle mayo can be tweaked to desired heat tolerance for your dinner guests. Until we are all working on our tan lines and sipping mojitos on the coast together, these tacos are going to have to do.
For now, they will do just fine.
- 1/2 head medium green cabbage
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro snipped, plus 1 tbs
- 3 scallions, sliced into thin strips
- 2 tbs cider vinegar
- 1 tbs vegetable oil, divided
- salt and pepper
- 3/4 cup mayo
- 1 to 3 teas minced chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
- 1 tbs freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 teas chili powder
- 1/2 teas ground coriander
- 1/4 teas ground cumin
- 4 6oz 1" skinless mahi mahi filets
- Corn tortillas
- Pickled onions
- Core and cut the cabbage into thin strips. In a large bowl, toss the cabbage, 1/4 cup cilantro, scallions, vinegar, and 1/2 teas salt. Set aside until ready to serve. Meanwhile, whisk the mayo, 1 tbs cilantro, minced chipotles, lime juice, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
- Preheat your charcoal grill with a layer of ash coated lit charcoal. Allow the grill grate to heat 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grate.
- Whisk the chili powder, coriander, cumin, and a bit of salt and pepper in a bowl. Pat the fish dry and rub with the remaining vegetable oil. Using your fingers, gently rub the fish with the spice mixture.
- When the grill is ready, arrange the fish over the grate and cook for about 10 - 14 minutes, carefully flipping once halfway through cook time. Remove the fish from the grill and let rest, covered with foil, for 5 minutes before serving.
- Heat the tortillas on the grill in batches and wrap in foil or a clean kitchen towel to keep warm.
- Slice the fish into long strips. Serve the tortillas with a slathering of the mayo chipotle sauce, cabbage, and fish. Top with pickled onions if desired.
Cook's Illustrated Magazine Mexican Favorites