HOT SMOKED SALMON TACO

‘They’re the rebels of the taco world…’

Eventually someone is going to knock me on my shoulder and say ‘Please… Mikey… no more tacos’. And when such a day comes, I promise you – hand on spoon – that I will ignore them. Tacos are my favourite thing in the world. I cook them all the time. And while I can only apologise to those I cook for, as I have given out tacos on more than ten occasions, luckily on this blog to date, I think I’ve given you three taco recipes (a healthy alternative to tacos, a wonderful vegetarian twist, and my favourite, the Fish Finger Taco). This taco is totally different twist.

This taco is cold. It’s actually inspired by a salmon taco I once had when I was in the Bahamas that was served in a soft tortilla (as always – the best kind of taco) and was much creamier than it was spicy and had a much cooler bite to it than that of the spicy beef tacos we know and love. This to me was heaven. There was also a few tomatoes thrown into it as a garnish which threw me – as I have always been schooled under the ‘no tomatoes with fish’ policy.

It’s zingy, it’s fresh, it’s still fleshy with a nice spicy bite to it but ultimately just the most refreshing take on a taco you’ll ever tasted. Take-taco-taste. My three favourite words when it comes to food. These tacos are perfect for when you just want to relax a little bit, sit down and not worry about needing to cook things. The hot smoked salmon (I literally used the one from Lidl’s – no joke) is already done so no cooking required. All it requires is some light chopping and heating up some tortillas. Beautiful.

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Preheat the oven to 200C. It’s for the tortillas to be warmed – I promised no cooking and not cooking you shall have. Open your pack of hot smoked salmon and peel the skin from its back. Sounds gross but if you’re in the business of eating fish, you’ll know it’s not. Drop the salmon into a medium sized bowl and break it up with a fork. You’re not looking for it to be ripped into flakes like that of canned salmon, but nice, meaty shreds.

Squirt in about two tablespoons of light mayonnaise as well as a tablespoon of soft cheese. Add a small dusting of chili powder, a teaspoon of cumin and a little pinch of sweet paprika (only a smidge). Grab yourself two or three spring onions and slice them. I slice on the diagonal because the shards seem to be bigger and I can taste them more, but your call.

Squirt in a scant amount of lime juice before giving everything another prod with a fork. Be careful not to mix everything together too much otherwise it will go into some kind of sludgy paste whereas you’re looking for ribbons of soft smoked salmon with the creamy dressing just whispering to it. Throw some chopped coriander on top before putting a few soft corn tortillas in the oven.

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I served mine with some roughly chopped and salted tomatoes and just a pillow-puffed bag of old lettuce leaves but you could do whatever you wanted – just don’t overpower this with any hot sauce. Now that is the first and only time you’ll hear me say that about anything. But these tacos are there for simple, refreshing creaminess and I think too much heat would take away from that.

They’re not like normal tacos. And nor do they want to be. They’re the rebels of the taco world. You kind of hope they fit in, but they don’t – and they’re all the better for it.

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