Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Coconut Fish Tacos

Another beautiful day in Jersey! It was nearly 60 degrees again yesterday (February, what?), so rather than staying indoors for my workout, I loaded up Riker into his jogging stroller and set out on a little jog through the neighborhoods. I streamed some Pandora tunes through the stroller speakers and before we knew it, 3 miles was done! Pushing Riker while jogging is no joke and I still get some soreness in my abs from delivering him a few months ago, so I'm not able to push myself as hard as I would like; I'm hoping to get my endurance back soon!

When we got home, it was dinnertime. We had an appointment last night to start going over life insurance and other fun things we need to take care of now that we have a baby to look after, so I needed a quickie dinner, and we were in the mood for something summery. Thanks to some prep work the night before, dinner came together in a flash!

A few weeks ago I pinned a recipe for tilapia tacos with kiwi salsa from Jessica at How Sweet It Is, which looked delicious. I had planned to make it on Monday night, but didn't realize I needed to marinate the fish overnight. Since I had already thawed the fish, I made the marinade and threw the fish in the fridge. The marinade called for 1/3 can light coconut milk, so I used the rest of the coconut milk on Monday night to make my yellow coconut curry instead. Love double duty recipes!

I followed Jessica's recipe loosely, but made some of my own tweaks and additions. For one, I used striped bass rather than tilapia. Matt loves fishing and last fall he caught a huge striped bass; we gave a good part of it away and have eaten most of the rest, but we've had one lingering fillet in the freezer for a while now and I've been meaning to use it up. I love this fish. It's thick and meaty, but also has a really nice flaky texture and buttery flavor, so it's perfect for tacos.

I coated the fish with panko breadcrumbs and shredded coconut flakes to give it some more flavor. I highly recommend this step! I also changed up the kiwi salsa a bit and topped the tacos with some shredded cabbage...we are all about crunch on our tacos in this house!

These tacos are also packed with protein (44 grams!) and have lot of fiber as well. I always figured cabbage was mainly water and kiwi just offered antioxidants and nutrients, but when I looked up the nutrition stats before making this I was pleasantly surprised. Who knew kiwi and cabbage had so much of the good stuff?

I ended up only eating one taco, but had an extra serving of the lime coleslaw on the side. That stuff is good! The only thing missing was the margarita ;-)

Coconut Fish Tacos with Kiwi Salsa and Cilantro Lime Coleslaw
Adapted from Jessica's recipe

Serves 2

1/3 cup light coconut milk
1 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

4 low carb tortillas (I use Tumaro's Gourmet Low in Carbs tortillas)
9 oz. striped bass (or any flakey white fish)
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 tbsp. shredded coconut
1 tsp. olive oil
2 small kiwis, diced
1/2 small white onion, diced
Salt and pepper to taste
Lime cilantro coleslaw (recipe below)

At least 2 hours before serving, pat fish dry and add to a large ziplock bag. Combine coconut milk, lime zest, salt, pepper and garlic in a bowl, stirring to combine, then pour over the fish, shaking the bag to coat. Let marinate for 2-24 hours.

Combine the kiwi, onion and salt & pepper in a bowl and set aside.

Heat a nonstick pan with some cooking spray over medium heat and add fish. Cook 4-5 minutes per side, until fish is opaque and flakes with a fork (if using a more delicate fish like flounder or tilapia, cooking time will be less). While fish is cooking, combine panko breadcrumbs and coconut in a bowl; once the fish is cooked, remove from heat, cut it into medium-sized chunks or flakes, and add to the bowl. Evenly coat all the fish pieces with the coconut mixture. Put the pan back on medium heat and add the olive oil; once oil is hot, add the fish back to the pan and allow to sear for about 1-2 minutes, until the coconut and breadcrumbs are toasted. Remove from heat as soon as they are browned so the fish doesn't overcook.

Warm the tortillas and then build the tacos by layering lime coleslaw on the bottom, then coconut fish, then kiwi mixture. Top with hot sauce if desired.

Quick Cilantro Lime Coleslaw

Makes approx. 4 cups

1/2 small green cabbage, shredded
3 tbsp. sour cream
1 lime
1 bunch cilantro, roughly chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

In a bowl, combine the cabbage, sour cream, juice of one lime and chopped cilantro. Stir to fully mix. Serve over fish tacos.

Nutrition Facts** (Two tacos with 1 cup slaw): 510 calories; 17 grams fat; 55.5 grams carbs; 21 grams fiber; 44 grams protein

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