Cornmeal Crusted Fish with Pico De Gallo

August 10, 2014 | 4 Comments

Welcome to week 31 of Reddit’s 52 Weeks of Cooking challenge. This week’s theme is breading/dredging. My contribution for this week is cornmeal crusted fish tacos with pico de gallo.  I have tried to fry a couple things on my own in the past, and sadly and happily I have not fried anything since. Until now.

For fun I am going to list the fried items I have eaten in my life and then take a little trip to the hospital to get my ticker checked. Just joshing you. Here goes nothing;  oreos, asparagus, pickles, potatoes, mars bars, snickers bars, zucchini, cheese, chicken, fish, hush puppies, doughnuts, doughnut holes, falafel, green tomatoes, okra, string beans, apple pie, turkey, shrimp, steak, cheesecake, zucchini, hot dogs, calamari, onion rings, whole onion, tofu, funnel cakes, apple slices and mushrooms. I am sure if I took more than ten minutes to think about it, the list would double, maybe even triple. I am not bragging, I am just sayin… Please leave a comment and let me know what deliciously disgusting fried food items you have eaten.

I did not want to use eggs or flour in this process, making it more friendly to all of you who have some food allergies, and besides, I did not think eggs and flour were needed, and also it is just so messy.

I needed some moisture for the fish so the seasoned cornmeal would stick to it. I thought about water, and then Dominic suggested milk. I remembered reading somewhere that if you soak fish in milk for a little while, it takes away the fishy taste. Not sure where I read this, but I tried it. If you are not a lover of fried food, you can totally bake this in a 350 degree oven for twenty- thirty minutes or so, turning the fish once half way through the cooking time for even browning and crisping.  Whether you are on team bake or team fry, I sure hope you take the time to make and enjoy these fish tacos and pico de gallo with your family and friends!

Cornmeal Crusted Fish Tacos with Pico De Gallo
Recipe type: Main Courses, Lunches
Author: Jillian
  • Enough milk to cover the bottom of a shallow bowl
  • 2 lbs of tilapia or other flaky white fish
  • 1 cup fine cornmeal in a shallow bowl
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt + more if needed after frying
  • Cast iron pan or other heavy bottomed pan
  • Enough oil to cover 2 inches from the bottom
  • 1 small green cabbage, shredded
  • 1 medium yellow onion, shredded
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 a bunch of cilantro, rough chopped
  • 3-5 juicy limes, juiced
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Slice fish fillets into easy-to-eat strips, or “fingers”
  2. Place fillets in a shallow bowl with milk for 10 minutes, turning to coat fish
  3. Place heavy bottomed pan on stove and fill two inches from the bottom with oil
  4. Turn on medium high heat
  5. Place 2 paper towels on a heat resistant plate near the pot with oil
  6. Remove fillet and let extra milk drip off
  7. Place fillet into shallow bowl containing cornmeal, garlic powder, onion powder and salt mixture, and use your fingers to pile up cornmeal and gently pat it coating fillet evenly
  8. Lift fillet and gently shake off extra cornmeal
  9. Place fillet in oil away from you
  10. Repeat until 2-3 fillets are in pan, making sure not to crowd the pan
  11. Let fry for 1-2 minutes
  12. Turn fillets carefully and fry on other side for 1-2 minutes
  13. Adjust heat up or down accordingly
  14. Remove fillets carefully to plate with paper towels to drain
  15. Sprinkle salt if you like
  16. Repeat process until all the fillets are cooked
  17. Enjoy!
  19. Combine all ingredients in medium to large bowl
  20. Wait 10 minutes
  21. Stir
  22. Taste
  23. Add more seasoning if needed
  24. Stir
  25. Wait 10 minutes
  26. Taste
  27. Adjust seasoning
  28. Repeat
  29. Enjoy!


4 Responses so far.

  1. I love your plates! So pretty…and the food looks good too.

  2. This looks delicious! It reminds me of the fry night we had a while ago where we seemed to fry anything we could find. Good memories! I will have to try this. My family really likes fish tacos. Thanks.

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