Fresh Fish Market, Ensenada

We must have passed it a hundred times in the last month and a half. It wasn't until my aunt and uncle came for a visit this past Friday that I learned of its existence. I knew something like that had to exist in a town famous for its fishing. But with everything else we've been doing, finding the fish market, among other things, was something we hadn't quite gotten to. Thankfully, my aunt and uncle saved us from going another day without that knowledge.

Entrance to Fish Market Ensenada.JPG

The day after my family's visit, I take my husband to introduce him to what will surely become his new favorite place. Right as you drive into the port area of Ensenada, there's a sign for tourist information. before that sign is a small driveway that is at such a slight angle that if you weren't looking for it, you'd pass right by, completely unaware of it, as we had all those times we drove by. From our place further south, there's a left turn lane that looks like it might lead you straight into a wall. Upon entering the small alley way, we come upon several taco stands and some municipal offices. About half way down, there's an older gentleman with a large straw cowboy hat, whistle in mouth, signaling for cars to come in or back up in a tricky ballet that could end poorly were it not for his guidance. It seems like it would be impossible to park our Land Cruiser in the tiny parking stalls, but in it goes.


As soon as we open the car door, we're hit with it: The smell of freshly caught fish. It's not like nasty fishy smell. It's much sweeter than that. Like the scent of dinner and ocean spray mixed together. Watching our step on the wet tile, we enter into an edifice that houses rows of stalls, each occupied by a different fishing group. For the most part, the pricing of the various fish and crustacea is the same everywhere, but each vendor is a little different in their offering. There's also the way they offer that varies. Although I walk in with my husband, the men address me, the woman of the house. At once flattered and overwhelmed, I try my best not to say anything offensive while also trying to remember how to respond to the barrage of sales pitches. I make my best "gringa" impression and sheepishly smile as I say something to the effect of, "Just looking."

And there's a lot to look at.

Fresh Fish at the Ensenada Fish Market

Fresh Fish at the Ensenada Fish Market

My husband does the peso to dollar math and announces that we are the luckiest people in the world. Wee settle on some "jurel", or as we know it in the States, Yellow Tail. It's about $6 a kilo. "I usually pay $18 a pound," my husband tells me in a whisper, as though we're somehow getting away with something. Later that night, he rubs the fish with some lemon pepper seasoning and grills it to perfection. We all sing "mmmmmmm" in unison as we take our first bites.

Yep. Pretty darn lucky.

Delicious Decisions

Fresh food lovers in the Southwestern region have long enjoyed Rubio's Fish Tacos. My personal favorite has always been the same. Whenever I walked into one of Ralph Rubio's shops, I'd order a Pesky Combo: two fish tacos, beans & cheese, and a side of crispy corn tortilla chips. But that just changed.

Last month, Rubio's launched two new fish tacos: Avocado Corn and Sesame Soy.

The Sesame Soy Fish Taco is a delicious blend of sweet and savory, while the Avocado Corn is a fresh take on old world flavor. Those were great additions to the Rubio's menu, the only down side being that it would make my ordering a little more difficult. But I could forgive Ralph. I mean, he did give me more delicious choices, and I can't really be mad at him for that.

But THIS?! I just don't know what to do now!

Ralph and his amazing chefs have introduced two MORE delicious tacos! Seriously? How am I supposed to be in and out with my lunch with all these choices? My stomach can't decide between the tangy new Salsa Verde Pan-Seared Shrimp or the new spicy selection, Smoky Red Chile Shrimp Taco.

Pesky WHO?

Here's Ralph to tell you more while I decide which taco to enjoy today:

See what I mean? How can you pick just one? Wait. I know! I can have one of each! ;)

Which one would you choose?


Super Easy Tilapia Dinner

I'm still going strong on the Pescetarian way of life. Thankfully, there's not just one kind of fish (unlike that one kind of chicken) so I'm not running into the problem of how to prepare it. Broiled with a little olive oil, salt & pepper, and we're good to go! With all the options, I've been having fun with my side dishes, trying to bring out the flavor of each different fish. A few nights ago, I made the BEST Tilapia dinner!

Tilapia are a firm, meaty, white fish that absorb the flavors which they are cooked in or with. They aren't smelly like halibut and don't fall apart like cod. Tilapia is a low saturated fat, low calorie, low carbohydrate and low sodium protein source. It's a source of phosphorus, niacin, selenium, vitamin B12 and potassium. Since they are quick-growing and short-lived, they're low in mercury levels; something to consider when consuming a mostly fish diet.

To go with my tilapia, I cooked orzo pasta in an organic vegetable broth, then tossed some Fire Roasted Papaya Mango Salsa into it. For a little color, I halved several mini heirloom tomatoes. The result was a light, tasty dinner that was not only pleasing to the palate, but to the eyes, as well.


PS: I got the Salsa from Trader Joe's. Careful... it's got a kick to it!