Tag Archives: Seafood

Chile de Arbol Ahi Tuna Tacos

Are you in the habit of freezing foods that you made too much of? I never used to be that person. I always had good intentions to freeze leftovers, then I would end up throwing them out when they were too old and growing  a foreign sumptin, sumptin on top, lol! Well, I have been reformed for a few years now and I have to say it works out great for us. I found what works for me and I cannot remember the last time I had to throw leftover food out. Of course, unless it’s some food item that cannot be frozen, then we have to eat it until gone, ha, ha, ha! The star freezer recipe of this delicious tuna taco is the oil and vinegar based chile de arbol salsa I prepared quite a while back.  In Spanish it is called  Salsa de Aceite Estilo Carretas. I had just about 3/4 of a cup left and I packed it in 1/4 cup storage containers. It freezes well and it is perfect for a kicked up marinade or added spice for many foods. I do incorporate dried chile peppers in many of my recipes, but there are times when I have so many, that I will prepare this salsa to preserve them even longer. If you have never tried ahi tuna steaks for fear of them being fishy tasting or hard to cook, I would urge you to pick some up soon! Just 3 minutes per side and you have the most perfect medium/rare, tender, melt in mouth fish you will ever have.  Fish tacos never tasted so good!

Chile de Arbol Ahi Tuna Tacos

Chile de Arbol Ahi Tuna Tacos

Ingredients
2 ahi tuna steaks(about 1 one pound total)
salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
1/4 to 1/3 cup chile de arbol oil and vinegar based salsa(see link below)
Grapeseed or olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 lime
*1/4 to 1/3 cup white wine, beer or chicken broth

For Garnish
Pico de gallo
Avocado slices

Chile de Arbol Ahi Tuna Tacos

Tips~ This oil and vinegar based salsa can be used as a basting sauce for grilled chicken, pork or steak.  Heat level on salsa is between 6 and 8.

Chile de Arbol Tuna Steak Tacos

Directions

1. Season the tuna lightly with salt and pepper on both sides. Generously brush  with the chile de arbol salsa on both sides. Cover and marinate for 1 hour.

2. Remove tuna from refrigerator 20 to 25 minutes before you cook it. Preheat 2 tablespoons of grapeseed or olive oil  in a skillet to medium heat for a few minutes. When pan is very hot, sear tuna for 3 minutes per side. Remove from pan onto plate. and tent with foil paper.

3. To that same skillet, add 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, juice of 1 lime, 1/4 cup white wine, beer or chicken broth. Taste for  salt and pepper and cook at a low simmer for 5 minutes. Slice thin or into small chunks.  Pour sauce from pan over tuna. Serve with warm tortillas, pico de gallo and avocado slices. Yields 2 dinner servings or 4 starter servings.

Salsa de Aceite Estilo Las Carretas- Oil and Vinegar Based Chile de Arbol Salsa. Click onto picture to see full recipe.

Oil and Vinegar Based Chile de Arbol Salsa

Tips~ When preparing this salsa, I would suggest tearing or cutting them into smaller pieces before you cook them in the oil.

 

Chile de Arbol Ahi Tuna Steak Tacos

Tips~ Take the extra sauce and cover warm corn tortillas with it before adding tuna. 

Chile de Arbol Tuna Steak Tacos

Tips~ Click  and type Corn Tortillas into the search bar for homemade tortilla recipe. 

Paella Mixta~Learning to Prepare Paella

This was my first time testing out my new paella pan last summer….A fully loaded seafood paella, well somewhat, lol!….I am certainly no authority on preparing paella. But as I often say to my husband, “How will I know if I never try?”. Try to recreate my version of paella in my very own kitchen, that is. This was actually my fourth or fifth time preparing paella. The first couple of times, I used the widest and deepest pan that I had in my kitchen and cooked it on the stove top. I was very happy with the results, but my goal is to try it in a real paella pan on a wood-fired grill. I have this one friend Jose, who is from Spain, and the pictures of his paella creations are incredible. I will never reach his level of expertise, I just want to feel comfortable that I am somewhat knowledgeable about the basics of preparing a good paella recipe. 

Seafood Paella
Seafood Paella
Seafood Paella
Seafood Paella

Paella Mixta…Valencia Style

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium white onion, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 serrano pepper, minced
1 poblano pepper, minced
1 orange or red bell pepper, diced
2 Roma tomatoes, diced

4 ounces Spanish chorizo, sliced thin
3 1/2 cups chicken broth (or if possible seafood broth)
1 cup white wine (I used Pino Grigio)
2 cups Arborio rice
1 large pinch of saffron
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
8 ounces large shrimp, cleaned, tails on
6 ounces bay scallops
2 six ounce tilapia fillets, chopped into 1 inch pieces
1 dozen mussels, because this was my first time using the mussels in paella, I got a little help from the store and bought frozen, already cooked.
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
6 to 8 Lemon wedges

Paella Pan
Paella Pan

 

Directions

1. Preheat 3 tablespoons of olive oil to medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the onions, garlic, and serrano chile. Season lightly with salt and pepper and cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Add the poblanos, sweet peppers, and tomatoes and Spanish chorizo. Cook for another 2 to 4 minutes.

2. Add the broth, wine,saffron and paprika. Stir well to combine, taste for salt. Add in the rice and spread out evenly. Cover the pan with foil paper and cook for 14 to 16 minutes, or until most of the liquid is absorbed. Layer the shrimp, scallops, and tilapia evenly over the top of rice, pushing it down slightly into the rice. Add the mussels, season lightly with fresh lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. Cover with foil paper again and continue cooking until shrimp turns pink and mussels open up.

3. Remove from heat and let sit for a good 15 to 20 minutes. Before serving, fluff the rice with a large fork, folding in the seafood and vegetables. Garnish with cilantro and parsley, serve with lemon wedges and hot sauce. Yields 6 to 8 servings.

Tips~ When cooking paella, it is not custom to cover it. But because I was cooking it on an electric stove top instead of on a special made paella burner or wood fired grill, the pan does not heat evenly. While it was cooking, I gently moved the rice from the outer edges towards the center of pan to make sure it was cooking all the way through. My pan burns hotter in the center, creating a crusty layer of rice. No need to panic, this is a good thing when it comes to cooking paella.

Always a good idea to prep ahead...
Always a good idea to prep ahead…
Adding great flavors with a longer saute time for paella
Adding great flavors with a longer saute time for paella
Seafood Paella
Seafood Paella
Seafood Paella
Seafood Paella

 

Fideo with Shrimp and Mussels. Here is a variation or twist on preparing paella, but using fideo or vermicella style pasta. Click onto picture for the full recipe. 

Fideo with Shrimp and Mussels
Fideo with Shrimp and Mussels

 

Chicken and Shrimp Paella. My first time preparing paella I kept it pretty simple. I used bone in chicken and jumbo shrimp, alot of peas and carrots on top, lol! But it was so tasty! Click onto picture for full recipe. 

Chicken and Shrimp Paella
Chicken and Shrimp Paella

Cilantro Chile Crab Cakes

Once or twice a year, I splurge a little and prepare crab cakes made with real lump crab meat. With a  few added ingredients, this recipe for Cilantro Chile Crab Cakes makes for a delicious starter or light meal. Since there is only my husband and myself to cook for on most days, this is a nice recipe to prepare when you want a special dinner for two.

My friend Jennifer lives in Maryland and she is always commenting on how delicious Maryland crab are. I hope to one day soon be able to taste them for myself. For now, I will attempt to prepare my best version of a New York crab cake, lol! With hints of Mexico, of course!

Cilantro Chile Crab Cakes
Cilantro Chile Crab Cakes

Ingredients

1 cup lump crab meat
5 saltine crackers, crushed fine
1/2 tablespoon dijon mustard
1/2 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 tablespoon hot sauce, your choice
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
Zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 fresno chile pepper or jalapeño, minced
1 egg, ligtly beaten
1/3 teaspoon pepper
1/3 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons Olive oil

Fresh Ingredients, Delicious Crab Cakes
Fresh Ingredients, Delicious Crab Cakes

Directions

1. Combine all of the ingredients listed, minus the olive oil, in a bowl. Make four equal cakes and transfer to a plate lined with wax paper. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Add 3 tablespoons of olive oil to an oven safe skillet and preheat to medium for 3 minutes. Brown the crab cakes for 2 minutes per side, transfer whole pan to the oven and finish cooking for 10 minutes. Serve with lemon/lime wedges, garnish with cilantro and hot sauce. Yields 4 cakes.

Cilantro Chile Crab Cakes
Cilantro Chile Crab Cakes

Tips~ When forming the crab cakes, gently press and form with the palms of your hands. Don’t skip chilling the uncooked cakes. This helps the cake firm up and stay together during cooking.