Poached fish tacos (with a vegetarian alternative)

At our house we love our Mexican food. Of-course staying at San Diego for years didn't hurt either ;) If you visit San Diego, I definitely recommend visiting an area called Old Town which is famous for its spectacular Mexican restaurants and fresh produce and pottery markets. Whether you are in mood for some fine dining or merely a roadside devouring of tortilla wraps, Old Town is the place for you! For me the best part of Old Town are the fresh tortilla stalls. There are restaurants on the strip which have an extension overlooking the street where a lady makes fresh corn and flour tortillas. For about 50cents a piece you can enjoy a tortilla hot off the gridle lightly brushed with butter and seasoned with home-made hot salsa! Heaven wrapped in a foil indeed! The only thing is now you can't be skimpy about eating on the roadside ;)

Anyway, I digress. Looking at some of our old SD photos, I got nostalgic for some Mexican today. Fish tacos can be quite greasy with fried fish and a mayo leaden dressing so I tried poaching the fish instead and made a lemon-vinegar based coleslaw dressing. I must say I was impressed by the poaching technique! The fish cooks very quickly and absorbs all the deliciousness of the poaching liquid. To top it all its even an oil-free way to cook the fish. Overall, the fish tacos were absolutely delicious! The recipe is very adaptive so feel free to add your favorite Mexican condiments: spanish rice, tomato salsas, mango salsa, guacamole, sour cream.. all good :) Now really, if you needed a reason to make a margarita night, this is the one ;)
Fish tacos
Serves 3-4
Recipe: Coleslaw without the mayo
1C finely shredded or chopped green cabbage
1/2C shredded carrot
1Tbsp chopped cilantro
lemon juice (few Tbsp - to taste)
olive oil (less than a tsp)
sugar (pinch)
1Tbsp sunflower seeds (for crunch)
pinch of dried oregano
salt to taste

Mix everything well. Taste and adjust the taste per seasonings.

Recipe: Black bean salsa
1/2 lemon
1 15oz can black beans
2 ripe tomatoes
1/4 large red onion
1Tbsp chopped cilantro
1/2tsp cumin powder
pinch of dried oregano
pinch of crushed red chili flakes

Finely chop the onion, tomatoes (remove the seeds if you wish), cilantro and mix everything well. Taste and adjust the seasonings per taste.

Recipe: Poached fish
1 salmon fillet
1/2 lemon - cut into round slices
3-4 whole black peppers
2C water (water quantity depends on your pan's surface area and the size of fish - use enough to barely submerse the fish)
1tsp olive oil
s & p

In a wide bottom pan add enough water so the fish would barely submerge. Add few lemon slices; sprinkle some lemon juice; add a few whole black pepper and bring the water to barely boiling. Reduce heat to simmer. Add the fish fillet and cook covered for 5-10 mins until the fish is cooked through (when poked with a fork it falls apart easily). Remove from stove. Remove the fish from water. Using a fork shred it into smaller pieces. Add some olive oil, salt & pepper and set the shredded fish pieces aside.

Vegetarian alternative:
Lightly saute thinly sliced 1 green and 1 red bell pepper with 1 chopped onion and a few sliced mushrooms in 1Tbsp olive oil. Season with salt, pepper, crushed chili flakes and oregano (or your favorite Mexican spice blend). Cook for 5-10mins until the peppers are tender but not overcooked.

12 small corn tortillas
avocado pieces
sour cream
Mexican cheese blend (optional)
spanish rice

Assemble the tacos just before serving.