Mango Salsa over Mahi Mahi, and a 50th post thank you

To celebrate my 50th post on SeaJetCook, I wanted to post one of my favorite dishes of all time: Mango Salsa over Mahi Mahi. There are so many reasons why this is my favorite. The mango brings me back to one of my favorite places in the world: the beach in Hawaii. The cilantro in the salsa reminds me of growing up in Southern California, my home. Fish is one of my favorite foods ever, and mahi mahi in particular tops the list. It’s spicy, sweet, light, and fresh. The crunchiness of the salsa perfectly balances the delicate flakiness of the fish. The deliciousness of this meal is to die for (no pun intended, keep reading), and I just lucked out that it’s incredibly healthy, too.

Maybe this is a little morbid, and maybe it’s a bit of an over-share, but my family and I have often discussed what we would want our last meals to be. More specifically, what our death row meals would be. It’s weird, I know. But if you throw away the weirdness, what it really boils down to is what our favorite meals are. I know Clinton’s would be teriyaki steak and chicken with a zesty salad and giant scoop of white rice. My dad’s would be a bone-in filet with a baked potato, sautéed mushrooms, and beets. Mom’s would be the same (which is why they’re meant for each other). Throw a big helping of steamed broccoli and creamy, garlicky mashed potatoes with mango salsa-topped mahi mahi, and you have mine. So here’s my recipe, I hope you all enjoy this dish as much as I do!

It’s spicy, sweet, fresh, and simply delicious. The fact that it’s healthy is just an awesome afterthought.

What you’ll need:

  • 2 filets of mahi mahi
  • Mango salsa (makes enough for leftovers):
    • 2 ripe mangos
    • 1 medium onion
    • 2 Serrano chiles (or 1 if you don’t want it to be too spicy)
    • 1 cucumber
    • 1 cup chopped cilantro
    • 6 tbsp lemon juice

What you’ll need to do:

Though I generally like to multitask when cooking, I like to make the mango salsa before I even start cooking the fish. It gives the salsa time to let the flavors marry and letting me focus all my attention on one element of the dish.

Start by peeling your mango. Once it’s peeled, cut off the very bottom to make a flat surface or base, making easier to cut around the pit. Use a paring knife to cut off the flesh of the mango around the pit. Chop the mango into small- to medium-sized chunks. Add to a medium-sized bowl.

Cutting a base on your mango makes them easier to cut. After you cut off the big fleshy sides of the mango, they’re easy to chop into small, salsa-perfect pieces.

Peel your cucumber and chop into chunks, making them about the same size as your mangoes, and add to the bowl. Finely chop your onions.

The chiles are going to give you the heat in your salsa. Start by cutting them in half and removing all the ribs and seeds to control the heat (the spiciest parts). Then mince into very small pieces and add to your bowl.

Chop your cilantro with both the leaves and stems – I like to leave the stems in because I think they have a ton of flavor that you miss when you add only the leaves.

Add the lemon juice to your bowl, and thoroughly combine. Set aside.

This is delicious with fish, chicken, pork, or simply with tortilla chips as an appetizer. It’s a fun twist on a traditional favorite.

**Tip: I purposefully make extra servings of the mango salsa because it’s also delicious to simply serve with tortilla chips as a dip. You can also use it to top chicken or pork.

Set a pan over medium-high heat on your stove, and spray with cooking spray. Cook your mahi mahi in the pan for about 4-5 minutes on each side.

Top your mahi mahi with mango salsa and enjoy!

**As I’ve written my 50th post on the 5 month anniversary of SeaJetCook’s launch, I would like to thank all of my readers. I started this blog as a small passion project. It was a way to write down some of my recipes so I wouldn’t forget them, and I hoped to inspire a few hesitant cooks to get in the kitchen and give cooking a try. So far, SeaJetCook has reached thousands of readers in 27 countries, which simply astounds me. While I set out hoping to inspire you, it’s you that has inspired me to keep creating and keep writing. So again, thank you. And bon appetit!

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Mango Chutney

Costco gets me every time with their tempting, inexpensive produce in gigantic quantities. Do I need 4 pounds of blueberries? Absolutely! And a crate of 20 oranges? Sure! So when I walked by this beautiful crate of mangoes that was way cheaper than the regular grocery store, I couldn’t resist. I love mangoes. They remind me of sitting outside on a patio in Hawaii, eating a Belgian waffle slathered with mangoes, papayas, and whipped cream.

But with my Costco-sized crate of mangoes, I knew I needed to do more than eat waffles every day. So I began thinking of every other way I love to eat mangoes, and mango chutney came to the top of my list. Mango chutney is sweet, gooey, and slightly tangy – it’s a perfect topping to my basic chicken. Serve that with a side of steamable veggies and you have yourself a delicious meal.

This mango chutney was inspired from a recipe by Emeril Lagasse.

What you’ll need (makes 4 servings):
1 mango
1/2 tablespoon margarine
1/4 medium onion
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar (I used Truvia)
1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon water

What you’ll need to do:

Start by peeling your mango. Then use a paring knife to cut off the flesh of the mango around the pit – don’t worry if it’s a little sloppy, you’ll be putting it in a pot and cooking it anyway. Once your mango is free of the pit, chop it into chunks and save for later. Then, chop your onion into small pieces.

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter then add the onions. Saute for two minutes. Add the mango, then saute for another two minutes.

Add the vinegar and the sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil. In a separate bowl, whisk the cornstarch with the water. It’s very important to whisk the cornstarch and water separately before they’re added to the mango mixture, otherwise you’ll end up with little pebbles of cornstarch in your chutney. Once the cornstarch/water is mixed, stir the slurry into the mango mixture. Bring the mixture back to a boil, and continue to cook for 4 minutes, stirring constantly.

You can see the big chunks of mango in there, delicious!

Top your chicken with the chutney and enjoy!

Mango Chicken with Steamable Veggies and Rice

While I walked home from work with Clinton today, I posed the question, “What do you want for dinner tonight?” A classic Thursday night question. I’ve been dominating the meals for the last couple weeks making some of my classic faves for the blog, so I wanted to give him the opportunity to put in his two cents. He answered, “chicken, veggies, and rice.” I’m not surprised, it’s one of Clinton’s favorite go-to meals. And of course, I know can easily whip up a fantastic meal with my classic kitchen staples.

To change up my basic chicken recipe, I decided to go with a mango chicken. It sounds fancy, but it’s incredibly easy. It requires only two extra ingredients: frozen mango (which I’ve had in my freezer for a long time) and some sort of mango/peach/stone fruit marinade (again, something I’ve had in my fridge forever), which tonight is a spicy mango marinade. Both of those extra ingredients can last a long time, so you can whip out this meal any time you need another chicken change-up.

Aside from those two extra ingredients, everything else comes from your kitchen staples, right down to your steamable veggies and rice in your rice cooker.

Yummy mango chicken with white rice and steamable broccoli and cauliflower

What you’ll need:
3-5 frozen chicken tenders
1 cup frozen mango
2 tbsp fruit marinade (any kind will do)
1 cup rice
Bag of steamable veggies

What you’ll need to do:

Get that rice in the rice cooker. The ratio of rice to water is 1 cup of rice to 1.5 cups of water. Once it’s in the cook position, let’s start in on the chicken.

Put your large pan over medium heat and spray with cooking spray. Put your frozen chicken and frozen mango in the pan. Don’t cover it with foil this time! There’s a lot more liquid in the frozen mango, so we’ll want that water to boil out. Cook for about 8 minutes over medium heat, then turn the chicken and cook for another 8 minutes (you’ll have a lot of downtime during this, so sit back and relax a bit!).

The mango makes the chicken sweet and juicy.

Not long after you’ve flipped the chicken, it’s time to get those steamable veggies in the microwave – I generally find that they only take about 5 minutes, but they can sit in the microwave for a bit if necessary.

After the 8 minutes of cooking the chicken and mango on the other side, the water should be pretty much boiled out and it’s time to add the marinade. Add 2 tbsp to the pan and toss with the chicken and mango. Cook for another 2 minutes.

Right about now, you should be hearing the pop of the rice cooker signaling the rice is done, the microwave beeping that your veggies are cooked. And voila! Dinner is served. A fancy, healthy meal good enough for any night of the week.