January 2015 — The Super Bowl Issue
Whether you make one, two, or all three of these delicious seafood taco recipes for your Super Bowl party, they are guaranteed to be a highlight. My favorite is the Tequila Shrimp Tacos. A quick marinade in tequila, garlic and olive oil makes the shrimp incredibly flavorful, especially when grilled over a charcoal fire. Finish them off with an avocado tomatillo sauce and brace yourself for the onslaught of compliments. To round out the seafood taco theme, I’m also sharing my recipes for Teriyaki Salmon Tacos with Spicy Broccoli Slaw, and Lobster Tacos with Roasted Squash and Poblano Cream Sauce. All three are flavorful and festive hand-held foods perfect for enjoying with the big game.
Tequila Shrimp Tacos
This recipe uses a quick and easy tequila marinade to really amp up the flavor of the shrimp. Then, to add even more flavor to the mix, the shrimp is grilled over a hot charcoal fire. A simple avocado tomatillo sauce and lightly grilled corn tortillas round things out to create some very tasty seafood tacos!
For the Marinade:
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 ounces silver tequila
- 1 ounce Grand Marnier
- 1 1/2 ounces lime juice
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 pound shrimp (16-count)
For the sauce:
- 2 tomatillos, shucked, stemmed and quartered
- 1 avocado, skinned, pitted and quartered
- 1 small handful of cilantro leaves
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and quartered
- 1 Serrano chile, stemmed, seeded and quartered
- Freshly squeezed juice from 1/4 lime
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- Fine sea salt
- Freshly-ground black pepper
- 16 white corn tortillas
- 4 to 6 ounces queso enchilado, crumbled
- Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
Prepare the marinade by whisking together all the ingredients in a non-reactive bowl.
Peel the shrimp and remove the tails. Partially butterfly each shrimp as you devein it, cutting a deep slit in the back. Stir the shrimp into the marinade so that all are submerged, cover tightly, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Prepare the avocado tomatillo sauce by combining all of the ingredients in a blender or food processor. Process until smooth. Reserve.
Prepare the grill for direct grilling at 600°F, preferably over a charcoal fire.
Remove the shrimp and discard the marinade. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper. Grill over the hottest part of the fire, turning once, until the deepest part of the slit on the back of each shrimp turns opaque (about 5 minutes total). Quickly grill each tortilla on one side.
Assemble each taco by stacking a pair of tortillas (two tortillas are used for each taco). Spread a spoonful of sauce in the bottom. Add two shrimp, then top with cheese and cilantro leaves.
Teriyaki Salmon Tacos with Spicy Broccoli Slaw
We shared this same combination of flavorful, homemade teriyaki sauce and spicy broccoli slaw with you a few years back in the form of a burger. It works just as well with salmon and makes great tacos. We’ve also done these tacos with beef skirt steak with delicious results as well.
- 4 salmon fillet portions, 7-8 ounces each
- 16 flour tortillas
For the Teriyaki:
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 4 1/2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
- 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated garlic
For the Broccoli Slaw:
- 1 1/2 cups peeled and julienned broccoli stems
- 3/4 cup shredded red cabbage
- 1/2 cup peeled and shredded or julienned carrots
- 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and shaved
- 1/4 red onion, shaved
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon Sriracha hot chili sauce
To make the teriyaki, whisk together the brown sugar, sesame oil and soy sauce in a medium bowl. Stir in the ginger and garlic. Use 1/2 of the teriyaki to marinate the salmon. Reserve the other half. Refrigerate the marinating salmon for 2 hours.
To make the slaw, combine the broccoli, cabbage, carrots, bell pepper and onion in a medium bowl. Stir in the mayonnaise and Sriracha. Cover and refrigerate.
Prepare the grill for direct grilling at 500°F.
Remove the salmon from the marinade. Discard the marinade and pat the salmon dry with paper towels. Place the salmon in the direct grilling zone with the skin side up. Cook the salmon halfway through, about 5 minutes. Flip the salmon over so the skin side is down. Brush with the reserved teriyaki. Repeat brushing every minute or so until the salmon is cooked through, about 4 minutes on the second side. The salmon is cooked when the meat flakes cleanly under gentle pressure. Slide your spatula between the meat and the skin to remove the fish from the grill, leaving the skin behind.
Quickly grill each tortilla on one side.
Break the fish into smaller pieces and split it among the tortillas. Finish the tacos by topping each with a little broccoli slaw.
Lobster Tacos with Roasted Squash and Poblano Cream Sauce
These tacos are decadent and delicious. Grilled lobster tail is wrapped in corn tortillas with bacon, queso fresco, shaved shallots and an addictive sauce. We prefer to grill our lobster over an oak fire for an even more amazing flavor.
For the Sauce:
- 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1 inch cubes
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Fine sea salt
- 1 poblano chile, stemmed, seeded and cut into quarters
- ½ cup crema Mexicana
- 6 lobster tails, 7 to 8 ounces each
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Fine sea salt
- 24 white corn tortillas
- 12 slices bacon, cooked until crisp
- 6 ounces queso fresco, crumbled
- 1 shallot, peeled and sliced as thinly as possible (we used a mandolin set to 0.5mm thickness)
- Fresh cilantro leaves
To make the sauce, toss the squash in olive oil to coat. Spread the pieces on a sheet pan and season liberally with salt. Roast for 45 minutes at 450°F. You can either do this in the indirect zone of the grill or in an oven. After 25 minutes of roasting time, add the poblano to the pan. Once the veggies have finished roasting, combine the squash, poblano and crema in a blender or food processor. Process until smooth. Season to taste with salt. Reserve.
Prepare the grill for direct grilling at 600°F, preferably over a wood or charcoal fire.
Split the lobster tails in half lengthwise. We find it easiest to use kitchen shears to first cut through the shell down the top and bottom, and then finish the job with a chef’s knife. Brush the meat with olive oil and season liberally with salt.
Grill the lobster tails directly over the fire, starting with the cut side down. Flip to the shell side after about 4 minutes or as soon as the meat releases from the grill grates. Continue grilling for about 5 more minutes, or until the lobster is fully cooked. Watch for the shells to turn bright red, and move the lobster as needed to get most (if not all) of each shell turning color. When cooked, it should be easy to remove the meat from the shell.
Quickly grill each corn tortilla on one side.
To assemble each taco, stack a pair of tortillas (two tortillas are used for each taco). Spoon in a little sauce. Add a slice of bacon, then half a lobster tail. Top with a little cheese, some shaved shallot and several cilantro leaves.