Yesterday was beautiful! I spent a bit of time outside transplanting and planting seeds for our "fish box" garden. If all goes well, we'll have tomatoes, potatoes, onions, shallots, heaps of garlic, spaghetti squash, beets, carrots, pears, apples, blueberries, strawberries, and a nice variety of herbs. Not bad for two people that don't want to spend their days in the garden. And since our washer is still broke, it was a perfect, breezy day for all the laundry I washed by hand to dry on the line. The garden was filled with songs from all the birds and at one point I even heard one singing that sounded a bit like how my grandpa used to whistle.
While I was having loads of domestic fun, Patrick was out fishing yesterday. He's still getting a few velvet crab, but mostly brown crab and a handful of lobster. I've figured out the best and most fun way to learn about his day is to ask if he found anything fun and unusual in the pots. It opens the door to a broad conversation, generally leading to what the water was like, whether the crewman sang while he worked, how the boat operated, if they spotted dolphin or if the seagulls had to be kept at bay from the bait. Last night, was no different. Although I did walk down to the pier to meet Patrick after his day at sea, so the conversation started while he was cleaning a small cod on the deck.
Imagine my excitement when I realized the fish was cod (first of the year) and would be the main coarse for dinner! Immediately my mind trailed off to the ingredients at home and what I could prepare that would be light, tasty and full of summer flare. To my delight, I created a lovely blackened cod with brown turmeric rice and mango salsa. It was simply divine at our Sunset Diner.
When we got home, I began rummaging through the fridge and press to find the ingredients necessary for our dinner. Of course, I never stray too far from the hundreds of thousands of recipes online; usually paying attention to cook time and basic ingredients. I knew straightaway that I needed a recipe that used mango since I had about a quarter of a mango that really needed to be used up.
In case I haven't let on by now, I believe I am the queen of turning leftovers into delicious meals and stretching ingredients as far as they will go. In the case of the mango, it had seen 2 salads and was a side with pancakes. It's final destination was the salsa for the cod.
So, rather than keeping you waiting, here's my recipe for Blackened Cod with Brown Rice and Mango Salsa
Prepare your favorite rice, while boiling sprinkle in a handy amount of turmeric and a bit of salt.
Salsa, mix all ingredients and set aside
1/4 ripe mango, diced and scrape away any pulp from the seed
1 kiwi, diced
1/4 english cucumber, diced
1/4 green bell pepper, diced
1/8 cup cilantro, fresh or dried (I used dried, since our coriander isn't ready for harvest)
1 small red chili pepper, oven roasted and peeled from the skin, diced
1 tablespoon white vinegar
Rub for the Cod
2 fillets cod
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon chili pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon chili seasoning
1 tablespoon Tabasco Sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
a handy sprinkle of salt
(black pepper would have been nice; however, we're fresh out)
Mix all the ingredients together and rub on all surfaces of the cod, set aside and heat about 1 tablespoon of oil in a frying pan on medium heat. When the pan is hot, place the cod, skin side up on the pan and fry for two minutes. Flip the cod and fry for an additional two minutes. Finally, grille the cod in it's pan in the oven for about five minutes. Make sure to use a frying pan that has an oven proof handle or wrap your pan's handle in foil and don't get it too close to the grille.
When everything is ready, dish out the rice, place the blackened cod on top of the rice and spoon a handy mount of salsa onto the fish. I recommend enjoying in a room, on a patio, wherever the sun is shining and make sure you have plenty of beer or water because this dish is spicy!!!