Recently, I decided that one of my cooking experiments this summer would be to follow a recipe. Here's the first one I tried, and it was certainly worth it.
Fish Tacos with Watermelon Salsa
(from food network magazine)
- 4 cups diced seedless watermelon
- 1/2 small red onion, finely diced
- 1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
- Juice of 2 limes, plus lime wedges for serving
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely diced
- 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
- Kosher salt
- 1 pound skinless wild striped bass fillet, tilapia or cod
- 1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
- 1 romaine lettuce heart, thinly sliced
- 8 corn tortillas
- 1 avocado, sliced
Make the watermelon salsa: Combine the watermelon, red onion, cilantro, lime juice and jalapeno in a bowl. Toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt and set aside.
Preheat a grill to high. Sprinkle the fish on both sides with the chile powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt; drizzle both sides with the remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil. Brush the grill with olive oil, then add the fish and grill until marked and cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer the fish to a plate and break into bite-size pieces.
Meanwhile, toss the lettuce with 2 tablespoons of the juices from the watermelon salsa and a pinch of salt. Warm the tortillas on the grill and fill with the fish, watermelon salsa, avocado and lettuce. Serve with lime wedges.
This is something I would never have made on my own, though it is something I order a lot when out. I was afraid that the watermelon salsa would make it too sweet, but it was just perfect. I used tilapia in this recipe but will try the cod or bass next time. And there will be a next time, but only after I've followed another recipe.
My history geek moment: It is believed that watermelon originated in southern Africa, though its seeds have been found in some 12th century (that's B.C.) burial sites of the pharaohs.