by Jackie Bryant


A brief history of the original fish taco

The fish taco’s story begins in Ensenada, best known for being one of Mexico’s most famous cruise ports.

During the 1950s and 60s, Japanese fishermen made their way to Ensenada.

They brought with them their food traditions, one of which included battering and frying angel shark.

Locals in Ensenada perfected the snack by making the fish crispier than the original tempura style.

They served the fried fish on a corn tortilla with purple cabbage, salsa bandera, crema, hot sauce and a slice of lime.

Angel shark, or angelito, is still what is used today. The tough meat holds up well during frying and doesn’t break apart or become mushy under the weight of the taco’s toppings.

But some stands use substitutes.

Shrimp, cod, yellowtail, haddock, dogfish, mako shark, flounder and other white fish have also been used.

It’s unknown which taco stand was the first to serve the Baja-style fish taco, but the general consensus is that Tacos Fénix was the original.

Though the fish taco can be found throughout the United States, Ensenada keeps true to the origins of this famous dish.



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