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Ensenada-Style Fish Tacos

Marcela Valladolid's Ensenada-Style Fish Tacos
Marcela Valladolid's Ensenada-Style Fish TacosTODAY
Cook Time:
30 mins
Prep Time:
20 mins

Chef notes

I love this recipe because it takes me back to the seaside city of Ensenada where the fish taco was born.

Technique tip: Fish tacos should ideally be eaten right out of the fryer. But, the fried fillets can be held in a low-temperature oven for 20–30 minutes.


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons salt, divided, plus more for seasoning
  • teaspoons dried oregano, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
  • 1 cup dark Mexican beer, preferably Dos Equis Ambar
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 2 pounds cod fillets, cut into 5-inch strips (about 16 strips)
  • 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon chile oil
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup shredded Brussels sprouts
  • Corn tortillas, warmed
  • Pickled jalapeños, for serving
  • Mexican crema or sour cream, for serving
  • Sliced red onion, for serving



Combine 1 cup of flour, Dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon of the salt, 1 teaspoon of the oregano and the pepper in a medium bowl; gradually add the beer and whisk until combined; set aside.


Pour enough vegetable oil into a large, heavy skillet to come 1 inch up the sides of the pan and heat to 350°F.


Meanwhile combine the remaining 1 cup flour and the remaining 1 teaspoon salt on a large plate. Season the fish pieces with salt and pepper, and coat with the seasoned flour. Working in batches, dip the fillets into the beer batter, then transfer to the skillet (do not overcrowd the pan) and fry until golden brown and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Transfer the cooked fillets to a paper towel-lined plate to drain the excess oil; repeat with remaining fish.


Combine the vinegar, chile oil, olive oil and remaining 1/2 teaspoon oregano in a medium bowl and season to taste with salt and pepper. Add the Brussels sprouts and toss to combine.


Place a fillet of fish in each tortilla and top with the Brussels sprout slaw, pickled jalapeños, Mexican crema and red onion. Serve with a cold beer.