By Chef Ella Freyinger

May 2021

Serves 4

Al pastor is the taco I am ordering every time. The spicy, tangy and earthy flavors seduce me over and over. This take is perfect for a backyard BBQ as we begin to move into the warmer months and start to gather together again.


  • 1 red snapper, cleaned and scaled
  • 10 guajillo chiles
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • ¼ cup achiote paste
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • ½ cup pineapple juice
  • 1 cup jasmine rice
  • 1 bunch agretti, chopped
  • 1 cup cilantro leaves
  • 3 sprigs mint, leaves chopped
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 jalapeño, seeds and ribs removed, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • Olive oil


  • Bring a saucepot with 1 cup water and chiles to a boil. Immediately turn off the heat and cover. Let sit for 30 minutes. Strain and reserve liquid. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, bring the pineapple juice to a simmer. Cook until reduced by half.
  • In a blender, blend the chiles, orange juice, achiote paste, cumin, garlic, smoked paprika, salt and reduced pineapple juice, until smooth. Pour ½ cup of the Chile mixture over the fish and rub into the skin and cavity. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
  • Heat a grill over medium-high heat.
  • Meanwhile, allow fish to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  • Oil grill grates. Place the fish onto the grill and cook for 5-6 minutes per side. The skin should be crisp and lightly charred and the flesh flaky.
  • Cook jasmine rice according to package instructions.
  • Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tbsp of olive oil. Once you see ripples in the oil, add agretti, jalapeño and garlic, Stir often for 2-3 minutes or until the garlic is browned.
  • Add the agretti mixture, cilantro, mint and lime to the rice. Toss to coat.
  • Enjoy!