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August 2018
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Grilled Fish Tacos w/ Slaw and Grilled Salsa

Not just for surfers anymore!  This wonderful meal that has been popular with the surfing crowed for a long time has been popping up ever where.  My problem with a lot of the places with fish tacos is that there is not enough fish and too much slaw.  I solve this by doing it my own way with this healthier version of a popular surfer food.  Instead of deep frying the fish we grill it!  I also dress the slaw with lime juice and hot sauce instead of mayo and yogurt.  Use any good white fish such as mahi mahi, halibut or tilapia for this nice bright and tasty treat.  Great for a warm summer day but if you are craving a reminder of warmer days on those cold winter nights you can broil or pan seer the fish instead of grilling and do some California dreaming, the surf, warmth and the pretty girls and boys!


  • 1 medium tilapia filet per taco being made
  • Spice rub of 1 part chili powder, 1 part cumin, ¼ part cayenne pepper
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • As required 6-8 inch soft tortillas rounds
  • Toppings and grilled salsa (see below)

Make sure the grill is nice and hot, also just before you put the fish on the grill make sure you oil the grates really well to prevent fish from sticking and falling apart.  Season fish with rub, I eyeball it and shake spice right on the fish one at a time.   Put fish over direct heat, cook for 3-4 minutes (longer if it is really thick) carefully flip and cook for 2 or so more minutes.  If cooking a lot, cook in batches re-oiling the grates as need be.  When done heat up tortillas on the grill for 30 seconds to a minute on both sides, assemble tacos with toppings and garnish with lime wedges and fresh cilantro.

Top With:

  • As much or as little slaw as you like (thinly sliced cabbage or pre cut slaw mix from the store)
  • Juice of one lime
  • Few dabs of hot sauce or to taste (I used Tabasco Habanero hot sauce)
  • Salsa (see below) or quality store bought – look in the refrigerated section
  • Sour cream
  • Others as you like

Put slaw in a bowl, dress with lime juice and hot sauce, mix well let sit for 15 minutes.  Add other toppings as desired.

Pexa’s Grilled Salsa:

Make as much or as little as you want, it is easy to multiply.  This has a deeper flavor, a bit earthy and subtly smoky as well.  It also passed the fresh salsa queen, Shae’s, muster with a resounding YUMMMM,  take as a stamp of approval.  This makes about a cup and a half.

get those char marks going!

  1. 2 tomatoes quartered and seeded
  2. 1 clove of garlic
  3. ½ white onion cut thin into rings
  4. Juice of one lime
  5. 1 jalapeno sliced length wise with stem removed (or to taste, remove seeds and ribbing for less heat)
  6. ½ of a handful  of cilantro (or to taste, it’s a love hate with cilantro for many people sub Italian parsley if you are anti cilantro)
  7. ½ tsp. of oregano (Mexican if you can find it) – optional
  8. Salt and pepper to taste

After grill is good and hot, over direct heat cook tomatoes, onion ringlets and jalapeno until soften and has some nice grill marks to prove there grill credentials, turning a few times of course, about 5 minutes or less.

Let cool for a wee bit, add to food processer with rest of ingredients and give a whirl to the consistency you like, keep in the refrigerator until you use. 


after the whirl

Ok, I will do a more traditional fried fish taco sometime in the future.  Can’t be healthy all the time!  Maybe make themMinnesota style with fresh caught walleye.


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