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[Photograph: Penny De Los Santos]

Fish tacos beg to be eaten standing up outside on the porch with a cold beer and plenty of napkins to sop up dripping lime juice and salsa. Now that it's starting to feel like spring, it is time to get cracking with some fried fish. Pati Jinich's excellent Rodrigo-Style Fish from Pati's Mexican Table is just the ticket.

Dredged in flour and pan-fried, the fish fillets themselves are nothing out of the ordinary. But add a generous drizzle of her citrusy-salty-herby sauce and you'll quickly be in fish taco heaven. The whole fillets also make a lovely entree on their own if you're looking to eat your meal with a fork and knife.

Why I picked this recipe: Fish tacos. 15 minutes (okay more like 20 with prep). Need I say more?

What worked: The fish is easy to cook, provided there is enough oil in the pan; and each element in the sauce adds a subsequent level of bright, fresh vibrancy to the crisp seafood.

What didn't: No problems here.

Suggested tweaks: You could serve this sauce on any mild seafood or even chicken. I'd also eat it as a dipping salsa with fresh tortilla chips. I found Maggi sauce in the Asian section of my grocery store, but you may need to poke around to find a bottle. Jinich lists soy sauce as a substitute, but I think Bragg's Liquid Aminos is a slightly better match.

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Pati's Mexican Table to give away this week.

About the author: Kate Williams is a freelance writer and personal chef living in Berkeley, CA. She is a contributor to The Oxford American, Berkeleyside NOSH, and blogs at cookingwolves.wordpress.com.

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