Easy Fish Taco Dinner Party
tsp chili powder, divided
ounces crumbled cotija cheese
cup sour cream or Mexican crema
red onion half minced, half sliced thinly
cups long grain brown rice
cans black beans, drained and rinsed
head red cabbage, thinly-sliced
fennel bulb thinly sliced
bunch cilantro leaves, chopped
limes (1 juiced, 1 cut into wedges)
Preheat oven to 250°F. Wrap the stack of tortillas tightly in foil and place in oven until you are ready to eat.
Sprinkle the fish on both sides with 2 tsp of the chili powder and a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper. Heat 1 tbsp of the olive oil in a cast iron pan or grill pan over medium-high heat. Cook the fish on both sides until golden brown on the outside and firm on the inside. Break the cooked fish into pieces and keep in a baking dish in the warm oven until ready to eat.
Combine the rice and 3 1/2 cups water with the remaining chili powder, chopped onion and garlic in a medium pot. Cover and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat to medium-low and cook, covered for 20-25 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Heat the beans with a little water in a microwave or in a small pot over medium heat until heated through.
To make the slaw, toss the cabbage, fennel, carrot, half of the cilantro, the rice vinegar, lime juice and 1 tbsp olive oil together in a serving bowl.
Have guests assemble their own tacos with tortillas, fish, a little slaw, cheese, remaining cilantro and sour cream. Serve additional slaw on the side along with the rice and beans. Set out the lime wedges for guests to squeeze on their tacos.
More About This Recipe
- My favorite way to entertain on the cheap is to make fish tacos.I coerce my friends to bring snacks to munch on as I cook: chips, salsa and guacamole are a natural match. And I have them bring a little cold Mexican beer (such as Corona or Negro Modelo) to sip. And I charge one or two people with bringing a really simple dessert like cookies or brownies to eat afterwards. These folks are almost always willing to oblige, since they’re getting a full dinner out of the deal.I then commence to put on the easiest and most satisfying dinner party ever. Fish tacos are a perfect summer dish and an easy favorite, doable even for non-expert cooks. On the side, you can serve rice, beans and a refreshing fennel slaw—all just as easy as the tacos. As a bonus, the ingredients aren’t tough to source, or all that expensive. You can feed six to eight people this way for 25 clams or so.
- Do all your vegetable prep—slicing and dicing your cabbage, fennel, carrots, etc—before your friends come, and preheat your oven to 250 degrees. When your friends start to arrive, wrap the stack of tortillas tightly in foil and place the bundle in the oven until you’re ready to eat.You can also prep the fish before your guests get in, and stash it in the fridge till you’re ready. Then simply cook it once your guests arrive so it will be fresh and hot.Set out the warm tortillas and the fish, along with the sides. Have your guests assemble their own tacos, garnished with a little slaw, the remaining cilantro, cheese and sour cream, perhaps with a squeeze of lime. Serve additional slaw on the side along with the rice and beans.If fish isn't your thing, or want other offerings, mix up the proteins and ingredients. It may be a little more than a $25 party budget, but you'll find more great ideas for your taco fiesta with friends!
- Here are some more sides and fixings that will spice up your taco dinner and are a snap to make!