WHAT A DIFFERENCE DIVERSITY MAKES

America is blessed with one of the world’s richest cuisines. This is in large part due to the many groups of immigrants who chose to make America their home. With them came not only hopes and dreams for a better life but also the culinary traditions of their origin home countries.

One such contribution to America’s national food heritage are tacos, this time from Baja California, Mexico’s rich western peninsula. Instead of the pork favored in eastern Mexican coast, oysters are the featured ingredient in these seaside tacos.

Thanks to immigration, Americans share this savory dish with their southern neighbors, making both culinary cultures richer through diversity. What can one say to that except OLE!

Oyster Tacos Ole!

 Ingredients

Citrus Salsa

  • 1 cup citrus, diced*
  • 2 jalapeno chiles, finely minced
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • juice of 1 (juicy) lime
  • several grinds sea salt and pepper to taste

Fried Oysters

  • 1 pint Taylor shucked Pacific Oysters, well-drained
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • several grinds pepper
  • coconut or vegetable oil for frying

To Finish

  • corn tortillas 
  • cabbage, very finely shredded 
  • lime wedges 
  • radishes, very thinly sliced 
  • cilantro leaves 
  • avocado, sliced

Directions

Citrus Salsa

  1. Zest the citrus, then remove pith (and membranes if desired).an dice.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a (salsa-sized) bowl. Stir well to combine. If your lime is dry, you may want to squeeze a second one.
  3. Set aside.
  4. Garnishes
  5. Prep all garnishes. Place in appropriately sized bowls.
  6. Set aside.

Fried Oysters

  1. Whisk buttermilk and egg together in a shallow bowl. 
  2. Combine cornmeal, salt, and pepper in a shallow bowl. 
  3. Heat oil to about 375 degrees. 
  4. Dip each oyster in egg/buttermilk mixture, and then into the cornmeal. Coat the oyster on all sides. 
  5. Carefully drop them into the hot oil. 
  6. Repeat with remaining oysters. 
  7. As oysters brown, gently turn them. Oysters cook quickly. 1 to 2 minutes per side in hot oil should be about right. 
  8. Drain the cooked oysters on a few layers of paper towels.

To Assemble

  1. As shown in the photo, use lime wedges between tacos for serving.
  2. On a warmed corn tortilla, place a small amount of shredded cabbage.
  3. Top with 1-3 oysters (depending on size).
  4. An overstuffed taco will tear apart.
  5. Add a spoonful of citrus salsa and the remaining garnishes as desired.