Huachinango con Salsa de Ciruela, Pasilla y Tequila
2tablespoonsvegetable oil, plus 2 more for cooking the fish
1 1/2cupsslivered white onion
3clovesgarlic, pressed or minced
4ripe plums, halved, pitted, sliced
4 to 6 pasilla chiles, stemmed, seeded, sliced
1/4teaspoonbrown sugar, or to taste
3/4teaspoonkosher or coarse sea salt, or to taste, plus more to season the fish
1/4cupfreshly squeezed orange juice
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
6tilapia fillets (about 6 ounces), skin on, or another flaky and mild tasting fish of your choice such as red snapper, rock fish, or grouper
Heat the oil and butter in a large heavy skillet set over medium heat. Once the butter melts and begins to sizzle, before it browns, add the onion. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until it softens and begins to gently brown around the edges. Add the garlic, mix well and cook for another minute. Toss in the sliced plums and chiles, sprinkle in the sugar and salt, stir, and cook for about 6 to 7 minutes. The plums should be cooked and gently browned and the chiles softened.
Pour in the tequila, gently tilt towards the fire to ignite it, cook until flames disappear. Add the orange juice, stir, and cook for a couple minutes more. Set aside.
Heat a couple tablespoons oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Season the fish with a sprinkle of salt and freshly ground pepper. Sear the fish, skin side down first, for 2 to 3 minutes, until skin has crisped and browned. Flip the fish to the other side and cook until desired doneness, my choice is 2 to 3 minutes more.
Serve with a generous spoonfull of the chunky plum sauce on top.