Category Archives: Fish

Baja Fish Tacos with Chipotle Adobo Crema and Roasted Corn Salad

Baja Fish Tacos with Adobo Crema

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Baja Fish Tacos with Adobe Crema
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When I think of fish tacos I can’t help but think of my sister and her family living in San Diego. Such great memories of going to the beach with the kids, hanging out all day under the sun and wrapping up the day by watching the sunset on the porch of a little mexican food joint atop one of the cliffs. While enjoying the transition to those cool nights, we would throw on a sweatshirt and enjoy some mexican food, margaritas, beer while laughing at various family stories.

Jill who isn’t a fish monger unless it’s a lobster roll or a crab cake actually took to fish tacos. I know many of the Baja tacos are fried but I made mine on a griddle. I wanted to the fish to shine and also wanted to make a nice pink sauce that combined chipoltes in adobo, sour cream, cilantro and some lime juice.

You have fresh fish with smokey spicy seasoning, the sweetness from the corn tortillas, the creamy spicy smokey sauce and for the acid and crunch from the sweet vinegar cabbage slaw. As a side dish I made a roasted corn salad with fresh jalapenos, red peppers, jicama, black beans mixed with a little of the chipotle adobo sauce and lime juice. Roasted corn is so cheap and delicious this time of year it’s hard not to put a few ears in the basket every trip to the market.

Ingredients
1 lbs of fresh tilapia
corn tortillas

Dry Rub
1 tbs Tajin seasoning
2 tsp Ancho Chili powder
1 tsp Kosher Salt

Chipotle Adobo Crema
1 cup sour cream
handful of cilantro
juice of 1 lime
2 chipoltes in adobo
3 tbs of the adobo sauce
Salt to taste
you can thin it with milk or cream if it needs it

Slaw
packaged cabbage slaw (half a bag)
1 tbs of sugar
2 tbs of white vinegar
juice of one lime
Kosher salt

Roasted Corn Salad

5 ears of fresh corn
2 fresh jalapenos
1 red pepper
1 can of organic black beans
diced jicama
3 tsp Tajin seasoning
2-3 tbs Adobo crema

Directions
This recipe is really easy but has a few steps. From a timing perspective let’s start with Corn salad.
1. 5 ears of corn, shucked and cleaned rubbed with some olive oil and some Tajin seasoning. Roast for about 40 minutes in a 400 degree oven. While the corn is roasting, fine dice your jalapeno, jicama and red pepper and add them to a large bowl. Rinse your canned black beans and also add to the bowl. When the corn is done, let it cool and cut off the kernels and add them to the bowl. Set aside until ready to serve. When time to serve, add the adobo crema and some Tajin seasoning. Taste and adjust accordingly. IMG_0123

2. For the crema. I added 1 cup of sour cream in a blender with the juice of one lime. I also added two chipoltes and about 2 or 3 tbs of the adobo sauce. I pinched a handful of cilantro and blended until smooth. Taste and season accordingly.

3. Slaw – Add vinegar and sugar to a mixing bowl and whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Add the cabbage slaw and squeeze half a lime’s juices. Taste and adjust accordingly

4. Take your dry rubbed fish and put it in a heated non stick pan on medium heat. Fish cooks quickly so it takes about 3-4 mins on each side. Remove the fish to rest, clean the surface and heat your tortillas for about 1 minute.
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To serve, put some of the slaw on the tortilla and then your fish pieces with the crema on top.
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Thai Pesto Shrimp with Rice Noodles

Thai Pesto Shrimp and Rice Noodles

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Thai Pesto Shrimp and Rice Noodles
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As I have mentioned before I read food magazines, cook books, blogs for inspiration and ideas. I gotta say Rachael Ray continues to surprise me with her recipes and ideas. They are often super easy but deliver on flavor as if they are twice as complicated. She can be campy and I don’t really watch her shows but I do subscribe to her magazine.

First off, I am not a huge shrimp fan but I saw this dish in her magazine that caught my eye. It wasn’t the picture or the title but one of ingredients. Peanut butter. I make this peanut thai chicken or turkey dish that I just love and it uses peanut butter paired with vinegars, soy and Sriracha. Jill likes noodle dishes and given it’s rice noodles and GF, I knew she would dig it too.

This dish was pretty darn good. It just works so perfectly together. Sweet from the peanut butter, fresh from the basil and cilantro, spice from Sriracha and then the texture of those noodles and shrimp. Comfort in a bowl. For those cooking for kiddos or boring palate friends/family/mates this could be a good one to use. You could sub chicken for shrimp but try not too unless you just hate shrimp. If you mildly like it, stay with it.

One note, I bought a bag of chopped kale and brussels sprouts to add but forgot it. I think it would be a great addition for more crunch. RR used iceberg lettuce in hers.

Ingredients
1 lbs of fresh shrimp (shelled, cleaned and split into half)
8 oz of Rice Noodles (find them in the asian section of your market)
Finely chopped kale, iceberg for some crunch

Pesto

1/2 cup of cilantro tops
1/2 cup of Thai basil (regular can be used too)
4 Thai chilies (seeded and spined)
3 cloves of garlic
1 inch of minced ginger
1/4 cup of Peanut Butter softened in microwave
1/4 of canola oil
2 tbs of fish sauce (extra splashes for the shrimp)
Juice of 1 lime
1 tbs of Sriracha (more if you want. I topped my bowl with the extra)
1 glug of soy
1 tbs of brown sugar

Reserve some noodle water in case you need to thin it out.

Directions:
1. Three basic steps..noodles, pesto and shrimp. Clean and peel your shrimp. Cut into two pieces vertically. Wash them and then add them to a medium heated skillet with a few splashes of fish sauce. They will turn pink and will curl up. They look ugly I know. Set aside to cool. IMG_9874

2. Cook your noodles according to the package and then wash them in cold water. Don’t forget to reserve some pasta water in case you need to thin out your sauce.

3. For the pesto add the herbs and fresh ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Add the peanut butter and then while the food processor is on slowly add your wet ingredients until smooth.

4. To assemble put it all in a low heated pot and stir until coated well. Right before serving if you want to add your lettuce or kale stir it in and serve immediately. It will wilt but you want it fresh as possible.
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Sweet and Spicy Salmon with Baby Spinach

Sweet and Spicy Salmon with Baby Spinach

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
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Sweet and Spicy Salmon with Baby Spinach
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Jill had a fund raiser tonight so I was left home like a latch key husband. When I am running solo I try eat foods that are lower on Jill’s list. I picked up some beautiful frozen wild caught sockeye salmon filets from Whole Foods.
Really Salmon with a little Kosher salt and pepper is all you need but I wanted to flirt with a sweet and spicy rub. I found one online and altered it based upon what I had in my spice cabinet.

The rub is both sweet but has some heat behind it too. I dried my salmon really well and in hindsight I should have just patted it down so that the spices melted on the salmon with a little more moisture. I also picked up some wood planks to cook them on which infused a little of that woody flavor to the salmon. As I have said before, when cooking salmon you need to go low and slow. Below you can see that none of the fat is leeching out which is what you see when people cook it at a heat that is too intense. Fat=flavor.
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As for the spinach, really onions and garlic is all you need topped with a splash of white wine vinegar for some acid. Spinach cooks down so I used a whole plastic box of baby spinach. When I eat this meal I like getting a little spinach on my fork and then a little salmon. Just works.
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Ingredients:
Salmon (wild caught Sockeye)
Wood Plank
Salmon Rub
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tbs of Kosher Salt
2 tbs of Chili Powder
1 tbs of Ancho Chili Powder
1 tbs of Coriander
1 tbs of Onion Powder
1 tsp celery seeds
1 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Red and Black Pepper
1 tsp of Slap Ya Mama (or cayenne)

Spinach (small box)
4 cloves of garlic (minced
2 shallots diced
1 tbs of White Wine Vinegar
1 tbs of Coconut Oil
Pinch of Kosher Salt
Pinch of Pepper

Directions:
1. Make your rub by combining all the spices and mix them together. Taste it and adjust accordingly. You will have rub left over for future use so have fun with it and use what you like and keep it on hand so you can pull a salmon filet from the freezer and whip up a quick and healthy meal.

2. I used frozen filets so let them thaw and then removed the moisture by patting them down. I recommend leaving a little moisture for the spices to melt into the fish. Dust the top of the salmon with your rub. I put mine on a wood plank in a 300 degree oven and cooked it for about 20 minutes. IMG_9647

3. The spinach takes about 7-10 minutes so can time it to be ready when your salmon is ready. I added the coconut oil to a medium heated pan and let is melt fully. I added my shallots and cooked them until soft Then add your garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add your spinach and stir until wilted. I then seasoned it and added a splash of white wine vinegar. If you need more moisture to help the wilting, you can splash in some veggie or chicken stock or even water. IMG_9649IMG_9650

4. Let your salmon rest a bit while you are plating your spinach. Serve and enjoy with a nice glass of dry white wine or a glass of whiskey.
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Tuna Noodle Salad

Tuna Noodle Salad
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When I am not on the road I work out of my house whilst multitasking between growing a beard and shushing our pugs.
For whatever reason squirrels and any human dropping off a package are apparently akin to Freddy Kruger in the pug world. So when I don’t have any leftovers I am always poking around the fridge trying to whip up something fast and decent.

I keep a couple of cans of tuna on hand and decided to whip up one of those tuna salads with a little pasta thrown in. Of course I have my Wickles Pickles, Dukes Mayo and Tabasco on hand. So I drained the cans and emptied the into a bowl. Started boiling a small pot of noodles and cooked them al dente. I wanted a little chew to them.

Mix in some Dukes Mayo and Wickles Pickles and a few dashes of Tabasco. Chop up any veggies you have on hand like celery, green onion, carrots, radishes etc… Mix in and add Kosher salt to taste.

I like to also throw a curve ball spice into the mix like a pinch of curry or cumin or Soy. I simply lay it on top of a bed of lettuce and top with a few oyster crackers.

It’s a great way to get your mercury in a hurry. 🙂

Please consider always using natural caught and processed Tuna. No Nets
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BBQ Cajun Shrimp, Red Beans and Rice with Garlic Bread

BBQ Cajun Shrimp, Red Beans and Rice with Garlic Bread

  • Servings: 4-10
  • Difficulty: easy
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For Fat Tuesday, Jill and I landed on Cajun BBQ shrimp with homemade Red Beans & Rice with Andoullie sausage. New Orleans BBQ shrimp isn’t much like what you would think of when hearing “BBQ”. Given there is a lot of Tabasco and lemon I suppose one could draw a parallel to Carolina vinegar sauce but it’s a far cry from KC or Texas BBQ Sauce.

I saw a few recipes for New Orleans BBQ and all are very similar in that they have Tabasco, Worcestershire, Butter and Garlic. I settled on Pat and Gina Neelys recipe. As stated before..love me some Gina. The use of clam juice jumped out at me. Emeril uses white wine which would be nice also but since I have never used clam juice I thought I would try it.

The red beans and rice turned out smokey, spicy, salty with a nice depth of flavor. Making garlic butter for the garlic Parmesan bread was perfection between the bites of shrimp and beans. The shrimp turned out superb. I love it when Jill closes her eyes and throws out a compliment. She loved it and said it was her new favorite shrimp. The shrimp is spicy but something about the vinegar in the Tabasco and the lemon juice gives it an acidic zip and brightness. The trio is perfect…spicy deep, spicy bright and garlic bread to reset the palate.

This would be great for a casual party where people could hover over the the shrimp and bread and just eat with their hands along side small bowls of Rice and Beans. Beer was a natural choice but we went Whiskey and Diet Cherry Dr. Pepper. Sounds odd but is our “go to” cocktail. It’s like a cheap old fashion of sorts.

Ingredients:
New Orleans BBQ Shrimp
1 lbs of large gulf shrimp (shell on, heads off and de-veined)
1 tbs+ of Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning
2 tsp of Old Bay seasoning
6 cloves of minced garlic
1 beer
Juice of 1 lemon
3 tbs of Worcestershire Sauce
3 tbs of Tabasco
4 oz of Clam Juice
1 tbs of Apple Cider Vinegar
2 bay leaves
1 tbs of butter
Kosher Salt to taste
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Red Beans and Rice
1 lbs red beans
2 Andoullie Sausage sliced
4 cloves of garlic (diced)
1 diced yellow onion
3 stalks of celery diced
2 green peppers seeded and diced
2 tbs of Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning
7 cups of water
1 beer
1 tbs of Worcestershire Sauce
Cooked rice and green onions for serving
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Parmesan Garlic Bread
1 loaf of crusty french bread
Butter
3-4 cloves of garlic
Parmesan cheese (grated)
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Directions:
1. The beans cook for 8 hours so plan accordingly. I used a crock pot and set it for 8 hrs and when it finished it kept them warm. Basically dice up everything and throw it in the slow cooker, stir and walk away. Pretty simple.

2. Rinse your shrimp and put them in a bowl with Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning and mix well and set aside. Cut up your garlic and then add all your wet ingredients to a measuring cup and mix it up. IMG_9430

On medium heat take a large skillet and add 2 tbs of oil and then your garlic for one minute and then throw your shrimp in there. You are going to partially cook them for about 3 minutes. They should turn pink on both sides but wont be totally cooked. Remove from heat and pour the garlic and shrimp into a bowl and set aside. IMG_9426

Now make your “BBQ sauce” by adding the wet ingredients to the pan with the bay leafs and simmer for about 15 minutes. It should reduce by about half and add a tbs of butter. IMG_9429

3. For the garlic bread, add some butter to a small pan and smash 3 or 4 cloves of garlic to infuse the melted butter. Brush your bread with the melted garlic butter. Top with Parmesan and dice up the garlic that you used for the butter. Top the bread and add a little more butter to the top of the bread. Broil until golden brown. IMG_9428

4. While your bread is broiling add the shrimp and garlic back to the sauce and cook the shrimp fully and allow the sauce to permeate the shrimp.

5. Pour your shrimp into a community bowl and serve plates for the discards and bread. Laddle some rice into a small bowl and top with the Red Beans and top with green onion.
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Spicy Tuna Salad Avocado Romaine Boats

Spicy Tuna Salad Avocado Romaine Boats
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Today for lunch I was wanting something simple, flavorful and low carb. I had an avocado and some romaine on hand but they were on the back end of their freshness. Whipped up these little tuna boats and topped with a tiny bit of Sriracha chips for some crunch.
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Ingredients:
2 Cans of Tuna (low sodium in water without nets)
Dukes Mayo
Shredded Carrots
Shredded Red Cabbage
Handful of diced jalapenos
1 avocado
2 dashes of Tabasco per boat
Sriracha chips crumbs
1 head of Romaine
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper
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Directions:
1. Pretty simple… Press the water from your cans of tuna. Put in a bowl and mix it in with Duke Mayo (use the amount you like in your tuna salad).

2. Mix in the shredded / diced carrots, jalapenos, purple cabbage. Kosher Salt and Pepper… taste and adjust accordingly.IMG_9214

3. Slice your avocado and cut the bottom of your Romaine lettuce. Put some avocado in the base of your lettuce leafs. Top with your Tuna Salad. I hit each boat with 2-3 glugs of Tabasco sauce and then topped with some crumbled Sriracha Chips for color and crunch.
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Roasted Salmon Garlic Broccoli Asparagus Pasta

Roasted Salmon Garlic Broccoli Asparagus Pasta

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Roasted Salmon Garlic Broccoli Asparagus Pasta
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Lame name but delivers on taste. I typically make a couple of runs to the grocery per week. My first run is typically Sunday afternoon. So prior to that run I have a lot of items left that need to be used and consumed.

On hand I had a bunch of asparagus, a little broccoli and half a head of garlic. I pulled out a salmon filet from the freezer and decided I would whip up a pasta dish. To be frank, nothing about any of the above ingredients excites Jill. So she took a bath following her treadmill time and I went to work.

This little comfort dish really turned out fantastic. The roasted veggies imparted a nuttiness, the Parmesan and salami give a salty savory flavor. The peas would pop with sweetness and finally the goat cheese gave it a tangy creaminess.
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Ingredients:
Salmon Filet
Bunch of Asparagus
About three small crowns of broccoli
6 cloves of roasted garlic
1 cup of peas
3 tbs of diced salami
2 cups of Pasta (Bow tie)
3 tbs of Goat Cheese
2-3 tbs of grated Parmesan
1 cup of pasta water
2 tsp Red Pepper chili flakes
Balsamic Vinegar
Olive oil
1 tbs of Black Pepper
3 tbs of Butter

Directions:
1. Dice up your asparagus and slice your broccoli. In a 400 degree oven cover the veggies with oil, balsamic, salt and pepper. Also cut the top of the your garlic bulb off, drizzle olive oil and wrap in foil. Put that pan in the oven for about 20mins-30mins. IMG_9166

2. While the veggies are roasting, remove your peas from the freezer, prep your salmon filet with oil and a little salt. Dice up your salami finely.

3. When the veggies are done. Lower the oven to 300 degrees. Remove the veggies from the pan and add your salmon and roast it for about 15 minutes. Remove it at medium rare. You will be putting it in with the pasta in a pan and it will cook a little more. IMG_9170

4. Cook your pasta in salty boiling pot of water. Cook it al dente so hat it retains a little chew to it. Scoop about 1 cup of the pasta water to use to thin out the pasta.

5. So now everything is cooked and chopped. Let’s put it all together. In a large skillet on medium low heat, melt the butter. Add the peas, diced roasted garlic and diced salami. IMG_9172

Stir in the goat cheese and red pepper flakes and pepper. Let the goat cheese melt down so that is can coat everything nicely. Now add your pasta and stir and coat well. At this point you will likely need to add a half cup of pasta water while stirring.

Now fold in the roasted asparagus and broccoli. IMG_9173

Finally gently fold in your flaked salmon followed by grated Parmesan cheese. You make need to add a little more pasta water to keep it shiny and moist. Serve and enjoy…

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