WSG News Blog

Local and Coastal: Blackened Whitefish Tacos

May 8, 2020 

By Abby Rogerson, WSG Student Assistant 

Blackened whitefish wrapped in a warm homemade tortilla is delicious in its own right, but a squeeze of lime, dollop of smashed avocado, and a couple pickled jalapeño slices really take these tacos to the next level. Rockfish is a great staple for blackening, but other species such as black cod (also called sablefish) and lingcod work well here too. 

Rockfish, black cod, and lingcod are just three of over 90 species of bottomfish that live in the waters of Washington State–many of which are caught commercially. The Washington Department Fish and Wildlife manages these fisheries responsibly to sustain this rich marine biodiversity and support fishing livelihoods. By choosing locally caught fish, you can support Washington’s commercial seafood harvesters too:  wild, sustainable, and delicious! 

Serves 2

Ingredients and Instructions

Homemade Tortillas

  • 1 cup masa harina
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup warm water 

Step 1: Mix the masa harina, salt, and half of the water together.
Step 2: Add more water a splash at a time, mixing in between. Use your hands to form the dough into a ball. Once the dough is cohesive, stop adding water. Adding too much water will make the dough sticky and difficult to handle.
Step 3: Break chunks off the dough ball to form smaller dough balls, about golf ball-sized.
Step 4: Cut a sturdy plastic bag into two sheets. Place one plastic sheet on the counter, put a dough ball on top, then cover with the other plastic sheet. Using a pot, press down hard to flatten the dough ball. Repeat with the rest.
Step 5: Heat a heavy-bottomed skillet on medium-high. Once hot, add a tortilla. Cook for 10 seconds, then flip and let cook for a couple minutes. Flip one more time, and cook for another minute or so.
Step 6: Repeat with remaining tortillas. Wrap finished tortillas in tin foil to keep warm. 


Blackened Whitefish 

  • 2 6-oz fillets whitefish 
  • Seafood seasoning
  • Canola oil 

Step 1: Rub a generous sprinkle of seasoning onto both sides of fillets.
Step 2: Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet.
Step 3: Once hot, place fillets on the skillet. Cook until they have a nice dark crust, then flip. When the fillets are opaque and flake easily at their thickest point, they are done. 


  • Romaine, roughly chopped
  • Avocado, smashed with a squeeze of lime 
  • Lime wedges 
  • Red onion, finely chopped 
  • Jalapeños, pickled or raw, sliced 

Assemble tortillas, toppings, and fish on a platter. Enjoy!