Cajun Tilapia with Pineapple Relish
From Cooking Light
In a past life I traveled every week for work, Monday through Thursday. This meant eating at restaurants 3 nights a week, always on the company’s dime. It didn’t take me long to realize what a diet nightmare this could be, so I quickly made up rules for myself. In my normal life, eating out was a special occasion worthy of gluttonous selections, multiple courses, and extended dates with the bread basket. But in work-world things had to be different. I forced myself to order dishes that didn’t sound that good to me because I knew were likely to be healthier. In my mind, that pretty much always meant fish.
That sort of sums up my view of fish. Boring and healthy at best, fishy and inedible at worst. With the exception of seared tuna, there’s almost zero fish preparations that pique my interest. Which is a big part of why I’ve started giving up meat (land animals only) for Lent every year. Now I’m forced to order fish at restaurants and try all the recipes I generally skim past. Last year I discovered tuna melts, fish tacos, and simple grilled swordfish. If you’re a lucky fish lover out there, these things probably sound like obvious winners, but I just never give them a chance 325 days a year.
This tilapia recipe was our first big winner of 2012’s meatless March. Even though it has a flavor profile that’s right up our alley, I know we wouldn’t have made it if some of the meatier selections from this month’s Cooking Light issue had been valid options. So while it can be hard waiting until mid-April to dig back into some of our favorite comfort foods, it’s nice to take a break every once and a while for dishes like this one.
- 2 tsp Cajun seasoning (spice blend, should be pretty easy to find in the spice aisle, or you could probably find a recipe for your own)
- 1/2 tsp coarse salt
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 4 tilapia fillets, about 5-6 oz each
- 1 cup pineapple, cut into small chunks
- 1/3 cup onion, chopped
- 1/3 cup tomato, chopped
- 2 Tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
- 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
- 2 tsp canola oil
- 4 lime wedges
- Mix Cajun seasoning, salt and cayenne in a small bowl. Sprinkle fish evenly with spice mixture and set aside.
- Combine pineapple, onion, tomato, vinegar, cilantro, and jalapeno in a medium bowl. Stir gently and set aside.
- Heat canola oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add fish to pan and cook for 2 minutes on each side. Fish should flake easily when tested with a fork.
- Serve fish topped with pineapple mixture and a wedge of lime.