Tacos are not the biggest rage in these parts, but many expat businesses serve them at their establishments, especially if they are catering to the American market. You can use two things to stand in for the fish; the first one is our trusty friend tofu, by using the fried “fish” recipe on page 141, cut into cubes instead of fillets, or see the Island Tip; or you can make your “fish” taco really authentic by using an unripe soursop, also known as guanábana. When marinated and cooked, this fruit has the exact texture as a firm white fish. If you are looking for the perfect vegan standin for fish, this is it. It is almost too real! Like tofu, soursop has a neutral flavor, but it has to be marinated overnight, which makes it pliable and amenable to seasoning.
Image by Matthew Benson

Ingredients

Soursop “Fish”
• 1 tablespoon pink or sea salt
• 1 medium green (unripe) soursop, sliced into 2 × 5-inch (5 × 13 cm) pieces, seeds removed
• ½ cup (100 g) Bajan Seasoning (page 26)
• 1 tablespoon neutral-flavored oil, plus 1 cup for frying

Beer Batter
• 2 cups (250 g) unbleached all-purpose flour
• 2 nori sheets, toasted and crumbled (see page 9)
• 1 tablespoon onion powder
• 1 tablespoon seasoning salt
• 1 teaspoon black pepper
• ½ teaspoon baking powder
• 3 tablespoons minced fresh herbs (try a mixture of thyme, parsley, and marjoram)
• 2 green onions, minced
• Two 12-ounce (355 ml) bottles beer (lager)

• 6 soft flour tortillas
• 2 cups (150 g) shredded lettuce
• 1 avocado, sliced artfully
• 1 cup (100 g) sliced red cabbage
• 1 red onion, thinly sliced
• 1 cucumber, chopped

Serving Size

Serves 6

Directions

1. To make the “fish,” salt the soursop and let stand for 2 hours on the counter.

2. Rinse the soursop and pat dry. Season with Bajan Seasoning and 1 tablespoon of the oil. Leave to marinate overnight or for 1 hour minimum.

3. To make the batter, mix the flour, nori, onion powder, seasoning salt, pepper, baking powder, herbs, green onion, and beer. Mix well and allow to stand on the counter for 15 minutes before using.

4. To fry the soursop “fish,” heat 1 cup of oil in a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat until hot, about 10 minutes.

5. Dip the seasoned soursop in the batter and carefully place it in the hot oil. Shallow-fry until golden brown, 4 to 6 minutes The batter should puff up a bit. Fry two pieces at a time. Transfer the soursop to paper towels to drain.

6. To serve, layer the “fish” in the tortillas and add some of the suggested zesty toppings to really sizzle up your vegan fish tacos!

Island Tip

If you’re in a time crunch, you can make these tacos with 1 pound (454 g) firm tofu coated in a cornmeal crust. Mix 3 tablespoons cornmeal, ½ cup (45 g) bread crumbs, and ¼ cup (30 g) unbleached all-purpose flour. Season tofu with nori and Bajan Seasoning as directed in the recipe above, and dredge in the cornmeal before shallow frying in hot oil in a medium skillet over medium heat until golden brown, about 2½ minutes per side.

Credit Line

Recipe from Caribbean Vegan: Meat-Free, Egg-Free, Dairy-Free, Authentic Island Cuisine for Every Occasion, Expanded Second Edition © Taymer Mason, 2016. Reprinted by permission of the publisher, The Experiment. Available wherever books are sold.  theexperimentpublishing.com