Friday, January 7, 2011

Panko Crusted Tilapia with Peach Salsa over Basmati Rice

Featured Ingredient: Del Monte Sliced Peaches

While I like the fact that I started this blog in winter I find myself missing some of the fresh flavors of the warmer seasons. Right now the choices for fruit are limited -- apples, pears, and various species of orange are the only things that seem to be at their peak of flavor.  Other fruits are from South America or Mexico and since you need to allot for a longer travel time, the fruits we get, such as mangoes are green and hard and don't seem like they will ever reach their succulent ripeness like they do when they are in season. Doesn't seem to justify $1.50 for one price tag.

 This is a great time to take advantage of canned fruits. Fruits that are canned are picked at their peak of flavor before they are packaged up.  So you don't have to worry about getting an unripe or mealy peach. You can rely on the fact that you will receive consistent flavor from each peach slice. I like to use fruits in their natural juices.  Peaches especially hold their shape well in the can and bring a nice sweetness to this dish.

While I was cooking the rice the fragrance wafted through my kitchen over to my cutting board and married up with the lingering scent of the peaches like they were meant for each other.  This entire dish has nice balance of textures and flavors. Tender, crunchy, salty, tart and sweet.

Serves 4.

Peach Salsa

I make salsa complete by eye and taste.  My measures are only guidelines. Basically the peaches need to be the most dominant ingredient. The rest of the ingredients complement the peaches but are in smaller amounts. If you use an entire 14 oz. can of peaches using the above guidelines you will get about 2 cups of salsa. 

1 can peaches - small dice
1 kiwi - small dice
1/2 red bell pepper - small dice
1/4 of a red onion (more or less depending on what you like)

1/2 lime juiced
1/4 cup cilantro
1/4 tsp salt

Adjust number of ingredients and flavors to your liking.

1 cup Basmati Rice.  Cooking according to directions. Add butter as recommended on package.

Panko Crusted Tilapia

I like to use a  mix of panko and regular breadcrumbs, as you get the crunchiness of panko and the regular breadcrumbs help more thoroughly coat the fish.

4 pcs Tilapia
2 eggs
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 cup regular breadcrumbs
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
Salt and Pepper

Rinse and dry fish.  Squeeze half a lemon over the fish and pat dry again.  Season fish with salt and pepper

Mix eggs with dijon mustard in a bowl.

Dip fish into egg mixture and coat with breading.

Heat olive oil over medium heat in a skillet.  Cook fish about 4 minutes per side until golden brown on each side.  Cover skillet in between to promote cooking.

Serve over basmati rice and spoon salsa over fish.  Close your eyes and picture a serene warm tropical retreat.

Panko Crusted Tilapia with Peach Salsa over Basmati Rice

Peach on Foodista

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