Thursday, May 5, 2011

Cinco de Mayo Salmon Tacos

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

I'm a French speaker, but I love any excuse to make some yummy Mexican food, so why not celebrate with tacos? These ones are so delicious and so colorful! They did take a bit of time to prepare, but that may just be because I get easily distracted in the kitchen and the next thing I know I've been cooking for hours...But either way, these tacos are well worth it!

Normally, I just set out a bunch of toppings like salsa, guacamole, shredded lettuce, all the usual; but today was special--it's a holiday! Here's what my taco spread included:
-spice-rubbed salmon
-black bean and mango salsa
-avocado-lime sauce
-shredded red cabbage
-chopped tomatoes
-whole wheat and corn tortillas
-sweet and spicy chipotle sweet potatoes (as a side dish)

Spice-Rubbed Salmon:

2 lbs. salmon fillets (about 3 inches wide)
2 tablespoons finely ground coffee
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne

1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Combine all the spices in a small bowl.
3. Sprinkle the mixture over the salmon and rub until it covers all the fillets.
4. Place the salmon on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, until the fish is cooked all the way through and flakes easily with a fork.
5. To serve in tacos, flake or cut the cooked salmon into chunks and serve with other taco condiments.

Black Bean-Mango Salsa

1 large mango, peeled and finely diced
1/2 a medium red onion (I used 1/4 of a JUMBO red onion--it should be about 1/2 cup or so), finely diced
1 roma tomato, finely diced
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
zest and juice of 1 lime
salt, to taste

1. Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl.
2. Cover and chill until ready to serve. This can be made a day in advance.

Avocado-Lime Sauce:
This is a bit like guacamole, but a little thinner and tangier.

flesh of 2 ripe avocados
1/4 cup cilantro
juice of 2 limes
2 tablespoons water
salt, to taste
cilantro to garnish

1. Combine all ingredients in a blender, blend until smooth and combined.
2. Top with chopped cilantro.

Sweet and Spicy Chipotle Sweet Potatoes:

4 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon finely chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
1/2 cup vegetable broth
2 tablespoons agave nectar
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt

1. Place potatoes in a glass dish in several layers.
2. Mix the rest of the ingredients and pour over the potatoes.
3. Cover the dish with plastic wrap, leaving a corner uncovered.
4. Microwave the dish for 8-12 minutes, until the sweet potatoes are tender and the sauce is thickened.

This was such a fun, coloful way to enjoy Cinco de Mayo. I hope everyone else had some delicious food, too!

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