29th July 2008

No-Cook Stew: Santa Fe Summer Pot with Shrimp and Avocado

Tonight, a dish that’s perfect for those hot summer evenings where you don’t want to turn on the stove or the oven: a “stew” made entirely of raw and precooked ingredients. Shrimp, cucumbers, and avocado are topped with a puree of tomatoes, onions, and peppers, then topped with cilantro and tortilla chips. This recipe comes from How to Eat Supper.

Lisa says:

Is this like gazpacho or something?

Chris says:

Sort of — it’s like the world’s best chunky salsa.

Lisa says:

Yum… seems pretty light if it’s just raw veggies and shrimp.

Chris says:

Yep! Light and refreshing… that lime juice brightens up the flavors a bit.

Lisa says:

So, you mentioned that you don’t have to turn on the oven, but we did anyway for the bread we had with it.

Chris says:

Yeah, well I also mentioned that it’s good for really hot nights, but it’s actually kinda cool and raining.

Lisa says:

True. It’s still delicious.

Santa Fe Summer Pot with Shrimp and Avocado
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 jalapeño, seeded and minced
1/4 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp freshly-ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped
4 sprigs fresh cilantro
1 small cucumber, peeled and diced
1 ripe avocado, diced
1 pound cooked peeled shrimp
Handful tortilla chips, lightly crushed
limes, cut into wedges

In a small bowl, combine the lime juice, onion, garlic, jalapeño, and spices. Let marinate for 10 minutes.
Place the tomatoes and cilantro sprigs into the bowl of a food processor, and pulse until the mixture is chunky. Add the onion mixture, and pulse five times.
Divide the cucumber, avocado, and shrimp among four bowls. Spoon the tomato blend into the bowls. Garnish with the crushed tortilla chips, additional cilantro, and lime wedges.

4 Servings

posted in How to Eat Supper, Main Dishes, Soups and Stews | 7 Comments

27th May 2008

Mango Barbecued Swordfish

This perfect summer recipe is adapted from the McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurant Cookbook, which I recently received from my boss at work (Thanks, Bill!). I was drawn to this recipe because the salsa reminded me of the one we created to use in our fish taco recipe — mangoes, pineapple, cilantro, onion — and the coconut curry rice sounded awesome. We weren’t let down, we both really enjoyed this dish. Hooray for grilling season! The recipe may look a bit complicated because you have to make the sauce(s) separately, but they come together pretty quickly.

Lisa says:

Oh my GAWD — I love this rice.

Chris says:

Weren’t you just talking about coconut curry rice this weekend?

Lisa says:

Yes! My dinner at Bick’s came with that rice.

Chris says:

How does this compare?

Lisa says:

This wins because we made it here.

Chris says:

I really like the mango barbecue sauce — fruity, smokey, and just a little kick of spice from the chutney.

Lisa says:

…and of course, the mango salsa rules.

Chris says:

…of course. There’s triple sec in it.

Mango Barbecued Swordfish
2 7-oz swordfish steaks
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup Mango Barbecue Sauce (recipe below)
1/2 cup long-grain rice
3/4 cup Coconut Curry Sauce (recipe below)
6 tbsp Tropical Fruit Salsa (recipe below)
cilantro, for garnish

Oil and season the fish with salt and pepper, and grill for 4 minute per side, or until just done. Baste frequently with the Mango Barbecue Sauce. Prepare the rice per package directions, and when done, pour 1/2 the Coconut Curry Sauce in and toss to coat. Place the rice in the center of the serving plates. Place the fish on the rice and drizzle the remaining sauce around the plate. Top the fish with the salsa and sprigs of cilantro.

2 Servings

Coconut Curry Sauce
1 cup coconut milk
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 cup chicken stock
3 tbsp green Thai curry paste
2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
2 tsp kosher salt

In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine all ingredients and simmer for 8-10 minutes until somewhat thickened.

Makes 2 cups

Mango Barbecue Sauce
4 tbsp coconut milk
1/2 cup hot mango chutney
1 mango, peeled and diced
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
4 tbsp store-bought barbecue sauce

Combine all ingredients in food processor and puree until smooth.

Makes 1 cup

Tropical Fruit Salsa
2 tbsp fresh mango, diced 1/4 inch
2 tbsp fresh papaya, diced 1/4 inch
4 tbsp fresh pineapple, diced 1/4 inch
2 tbsp diced red onion
2 tbsp diced red bell pepper
2 tsp freshly squeezed lime juice
salt, pinch
pepper, pinch
cumin, pinch
1 tsp cilantro
2 splashes triple sec

Combine all ingredients, season to taste.

Makes about 1 cup

posted in Main Dishes, McCormick & Schmick | 3 Comments

17th April 2008

Baked Halibut with Roasted Tomatoes and Potatoes

A really easy-to-make meal tonight based on a recipe from Rick Bayless’s Mexican Everyday. Halibut sits on a bed of sliced potatoes and carrots and is baked in a quick tomato-jalapeño salsa. I love recipes like this; they’re so adaptable to whatever fish or vegetables you’re in the mood for, are very healthy, and are on the table in under an hour.

Lisa says:


Chris says:

Wow, it’s been a while since a dinner earned that declaration…

Lisa says:

Well it is pretty spicy… and by the way, this is the best halibut ever.

Chris says:

Oooh, yeah, I think I timed it perfectly — it’s just starting to flake and is incredibly moist.

Lisa says:

This is filling!

Chris says:

Well, we’re getting twice the veggies since all I did was use less fish than called for in 4-serving original recipe.

Lisa says:

I wasn’t complaining, that’s for sure… 🙂

Chris says:

I like that we’re once again proving that we [heart] cilantro.

Baked Halibut with Roasted Tomatoes and Potatoes
4 medium (1 lb) Yukon Gold potatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick
4 thin carrots, cut in lengths
1 tbsp olive oil
1 15-oz can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
2 large garlic cloves, quartered
1/3 cup coarsely chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup sliced canned pickled jalapeños
1 tbsp jalapeño pickling juice
2 6-oz skinless halibut fillets

Turn on the oven to 400 degrees. Place the potoatoes and carrots into an 8″ square glass baking dish and drizzle over the oil and 1/2 tsp of salt. Toss to coat, then spread the potatoes in an even layer, cover with plastic wrap, and microwave on high for 4 minutes, until the potatoes are just tender.
Meanwhile, in a blender combine the tomatoes in their juices, garlic, cilantro, jalapeños, and pickling juice and puree, leaving just a little texture.
Lay the fish in a single layer over the potatoes and pour the tomato mixture evenly over the fish and potatoes.
Slide the baking dish into the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes, until the fish flakes when pressed firmly.
Garnish with cilantro and serve.

2 Generous portions

posted in Main Dishes, Mexican, Mexican Everyday | 2 Comments

21st January 2008

Arroz Rojo con Pollo y Frijoles Negros

Yep, that’s Chicken and Rice with black beans… this recipe is based on one in Rick Bayless’s Mexican Everyday cookbook and was a nice smoky twist on the usual. What really elevated the dish was a quick homemade chipotle-tomatillo salsa that we spooned on; as our dishes emptied we proceeded to just consume the salsa straight out of the bowl. 😉

Lisa says:

Spic- hey, this isn’t spicy!

Chris says:

See? It’s your dream come true, a dish that I don’t make too spicy for you, so that you can actually add salsa.

Lisa says:

Hey, I like a little spice…

Chris says:

That’s what I’m saying… add as much as you want. This salsa rules.

Lisa says:

Yeah it does! I like the smoky taste of this dish.

Chris says:

It’s mighty tasty. We could make this into a party dish, maybe for the — hey, where are you going?

Lisa says:

I’m getting more bites!

Chicken and Rice with Black Beans
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 1/2 tbsp ancho chile powder
1 medium white onion, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 cup rice
5 garlic cloves
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 15-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup chopped green onions
cilantro to garnish
smoky chipotle salsa (see below)

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Salt the chicken breasts, then sprinkle both sides with 1 tablespoon of the ancho chile powder. Lay them in the hot oil to brown, about 3 minutes on each side. Remove from the pot and set aside. Leave the oil in the pan. Add the rice and onion, and stir for 4-5 minutes or until the rice starts to look dry and opaque. Add the garlic and the remaining chile powder and stir for another minute. Add the broth and up to a teaspoon of salt, and stir well. Bring to a boil, lower the heat to medium-low, cover, and let cook for 10 minutes.
Cut the chicken breasts into 1-inch cubes, uncover the pot, and add the chicken and beans. Re-cover the pot and cook for an additional 12 minutes.
Uncover, stir in the green onions, then remove from the heat and let sit, covered, for 5 to 10 minutes.
Garnish with cilantro, and serve with smoky chipotle salsa.

Smoky Chipotle Salsa
4 garlic cloves
4 medium tomatillos, husked, rinsed, and cut in half
2 canned chipotle peppers

Set a large skillet over medium-high heat, and add the garlic and tomatillos, cut-side down. When the tomatillos are browned, after 3-4 minutes, turn everything over and brown the other side.
Add the garlic, tomatillos, chipotle peppers, and 1/4 cup water to a blender and puree. Add salt to taste.

posted in Main Dishes, Mexican, Mexican Everyday | 11 Comments

6th December 2007

Chile-Marinated Pork with Black Bean Salsa

This is a recipe that I’ve really been looking forward to making from Healthy Latin Cooking. We usually don’t make pork (Lisa’s not sure if she likes it) unless it’s in a stew, but after tonight’s meal I think we’ll be making it more often. The pork marinates in a delicious combination of chipotle peppers, citrus juices, garlic, and onions.

Lisa says:

Wahoo! Pomegranate seeds!

Chris says:

I love how they explode in your mouth. Hey, this dish looks Christmas-y. This Other White Meat(tm) has so much flavor! Guess that’s what 24 hours of marinating gets you.

Lisa says:

Dammit, you have to stop making such delicious meals — I just eat and eat and eat!

Chris says:

Isn’t that the point?

Chile-Marinated Pork with Black Bean Salsa
1-1/4 lb pork loin, trimmed of all visible fat
3 canned chipotle peppers, coarsely chopped
3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1/4 small red onion, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup orange juice
1/4 cup lime juice
3 tbsp red-wine vinegar
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp allspice
salt and ground black pepper
Black Bean Salsa (recipe follows)
1 pomegranate, broken into seeds

Place the pork in a shallow glass or ceramic baking dish.
In a blender, combine the chipotles, garlic, onion, orange and lime juice, vinegar, oregano, and allspice; puree until smooth. Sppon the marinade over the pork. Cover and refrigerate for 12-24 hours. Turn 2 or 3 times while marinating.
Preheat a grill or broiler to medium-high. Season the pork with salt and pepper. Grill or broil the pork for 6 to 8 minutes per side, or until the internal temperature reaches 160F. Let the pork sit for 3 minutes before slicing on the diagonal.
Mound a portion of salsa on each of 4 dinner plates. Divide the pork among the plates; dollop sour cream over the pork. Sprinkle with pomegranate seeds.

4 servings

Black Bean Salsa
2 cups cooked black beans
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1 rib celery, finely chopped
1 jalapeno, finely chopped
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
3 tbsp lime juice
salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and refrigerate.

Hmmmm, first time using pomegranate seeds in a dish, I guess I should submit this to this week’s Weekend Herb Blogging!

posted in Healthy Latin Cooking, Main Dishes | 8 Comments