Friday, October 9, 2009

Fish Tostada Recipe & El Sabroso Taco Truck Video

El Sabroso, on a side street just north of LAX, has the best budget Ceviche Tostada in town. It's only $1.25 for a large tostada heaped to overflowing with chopped lime-cooked red snapper, raw onion, tomato, cilantro, and jalapeno, and it's topped with slices of avocado and a wedge of lime. The roar of low-landing airplanes directly overhead is not enough to distract from these tart and tasty crunchy platters of marinated fish.

Picking up these overburdened crisp discs, you fear they will break under the weight. Along with the signature Tostadas de Pescado, are Tostadas d' Cameron (shrimp) for 25 cents more -- delicious. Regular Mexican taco truck fare is available; I recommend the succulent pork carnitas tacos.

El Sabroso parks on the same strip of chain link fences and industrial complexes along Arbor Vitae Street every day during daylight hours. Just look for the large plain white taco truck. No fancy murals here - just good cheap fare.

So give yourself a reward for being generous enough to drop off your out-of-towner at the airport, and pull over for a quick, cool crispy seafood treat.

The  Cheap$kate Chef briefly mentioned my favorite seafood taco truck in this past video post, and it's time for a return visit, along with a 99 Cent Chef recipe for Tostada de Pescado.
El Sbroso Taco Truck - Video

Play it here. The video runs 38 seconds.

Lately I've seen quite a selection of 4-6 oz. frozen filets of mahi-mahi, salmon, flounder, tilapia and tuna at regular markets, like Albertsons, for a dollar, and at 99c only Stores for 99.99 cents. El Sabroso taco truck uses red snapper --harder to get at these prices -- but any firm fish will make a decent Ceviche. Four ounces is enough for about four tostadas. For this recipe I used thawed frozen tilapia from this 99c only Store.

The trick to lime-cooking fish is chopping it up so the lime juice penetrates thoroughly. It takes about 4-6 hours of "cooking" in the refrigerator. You'll know when it's done by the increased firmness, and the fish turns from semi-transparent to an opaque white/gray.

After the fish is "done" you add chopped tomato, onion, jalapeno and cilantro. Substitute fish with chopped and "cooked" shrimp for a Tostada de Cameron.

I had a few corn tortillas hidden in the back of the fridge, and fried those. You can get crispy tostada rounds at most grocery chains and especially Latin markets. It's easy to fry corn tortillas - just heat enough oil (1/2 inch deep in a wide shallow pan) and fry a minute or so on each side until browned, then drain on a paper towel.

You can prepare them well in advance. Or, simply set out a bowl of ceviche, along with your favorite guacamole, and a bag of tortilla chips, for a cool tasty party tray.

My Tostada de Pescado takes a little chopping but is big on flavor.

Ingredients (4 tostadas)
4 oz. frozen or fresh firm fish - including red snapper, tilapia, halibut, or mahi-mahi
3-4 limes - enough juice to almost cover the chopped fish.
1 medium tomato - chopped
3/4 of a whole chopped onion - add as much or as little as you like.
Handful of cilantro chopped - again, add as much as you like (I've made it without cilantro and it tastes fine).Jalapeno - a couple of slices, add a small amount at a time and taste for desired heat.
4 fried corn tortillas or packaged tostada rounds - a bag of tortilla chips is fine.
1 cup of oil - if frying soft corn tortillas - oil is reusable.
Avocado - optional, add a few slices as a topping.

Chop fish into small pieces, place in bowl, and squeeze enough lime juice to almost submerge fish. Best to lime-cook fish in a ceramic bowl. Cover and refrigerate 4-6 hours. Fish is "done" when it firms up and the color changes from semi-transparent to an opaque white/grey. When fish is done add chopped onion, tomato, cilantro and jalapeno. Salt and pepper to taste.

For frying soft corn tortillas, heat a cup of oil to medium/high (about 350 degrees). Tortillas will float in the oil and may bubble up in the middle, just press tortillas down for a few seconds to flatten. Tortillas cook fast, a minute or so for each side; they're done when light/medium brown and crisp. Drain and cool on paper towels or a rack.

It is simple to assemble --just lay out your corn tostadas and top with Ceviche and sliced avocado (optional). You can also chow down with tortilla chips. And don't forget the salsa picante!

El Sabroso Mariscos Taco Truck - Parked at about 5745 Arbor Vitae St. (just east of Airport Blvd. were Westchester Pkwy. turns into Arbor Vitae St. - confusing, I know, but worth locating). Click here for a map.

Click here to embed or view video on youtube.


Ben said...

My wife is from Guatamala and will not fry tortillas for tostadas. Becuase the corn tortillas for tostadas are actually toasted not fried traditionally. It's also healthier. she heats toaster oven to about 200 degrees, takes longer then normal, so if you're in a hurray use the toast feature.

99 Cent Chef said...

Hi Ben, I like the baking alternative, thanks!

Unknown said...

Hi Chef! I love your blog. I look forward to reading your new postings every week.
A tasty addition to ceviche in some Clamato or tomato juice. It blends well with the lime juice and adds another dimension to the ceviche.

99 Cent Chef said...

Hi Shannon, and mix in cooked bay shrimp and you have a Shrimp Cocktail. Yum!

Shell said...

I long for salsa that doesn't come from a jar.

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