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Fish Tostadas October 12, 2011

Posted by inspiredbywolfe in Fish.
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Fish tostadas: wherein I managed to make an entire meal without taking any photos of the star player.

H and I are both huge fans of both Mexican, and tex-mex food. Unfortunately, as I have mentioned previously, being in Melbourne, there’s not too many places that serve good quality versions of these food styles, hence my previously making things like chili myself.

One of our favourite things to make is corn flour tortillas with a variety of fillings. This time, I was browsing the Homesick Texan, and found the recipe for fish tostadas. I was very interested in the description of the Salsa Veracruzana, which sounded was described as Spanish in origin. To start with, I sautéed some onions, garlic, chilis until they were soft.

While the recipe called for fresh tomatoes, it’s not at all tomato season here, and the tomatoes available are hard and flavourless, so I substituted a can of tomatoes instead. I added the tomatoes, capers, and olives, and simmered everything as I prepared the other ingredients. I think I was so excited about the tomato sauce I didn’t take any photos while it was simmering; I was too busy sneaking samples.

While the sauce was cooking, I got to work making the tortillas. I don’t really follow a recipe making these tortillias, I just add water to masa harina until a thick dough forms. I used this as a starting place.  Corn-based tortillas are quite hard to work with, due to their lack of gluten. They tend to break instead of roll nicely, and I’ve found it easiest to roll them out between two sheets of baking paper to stop them breaking.

I rolled out all the tortillas, sandwiching them between sheets of plastic wrap to keep them moist. I then got to work on the pieces of fish, which I seasoned with salt, pepper and cumin before frying in oil until they were cooked through.

I let them rest while I heated a bit of oil in the same pan, and fried the tortillas one by one, flipping them halfway through. Once they were cooked, I assembled the tostadas.

Each tostada got a piece of fish, the Salsa Veracruzana, some guacamole I made with lots of lemon juice, and some lettuce.

I thought the Salsa Veracruzana was fabulous. It provided depth which is often lacking in salsas, and the flavours of the onion, chili and capers made it almost Mediterranean in flavour. This was complimented nicely by the cumin-flavoured fish, the guacamole and the lettuce. The tortillas themselves were crispy and delicious.

While not the neatest of dishes, it’s a bit scary how satisfying these were. The Salsa Veracruzana is definitely something I’ll make again; it would make a great pasta sauce as well as a filling for tortillas. I know this maybe isn’t up to Nero Wolfe’s more refined tastes, but I hope he would appreciate these tostadas as a piece of American culinary history.

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