Monday, January 17, 2011

This Army Runs On Her Stomach

This is my busy time of year professionally - well, one of them, anyway. Gotta bring the A-game every day. Gotta not get sick. Gotta think on my feet. Gotta not yell. Gotta gotta.

So what's a girl to do? The magic wand is always "out of stock", Superwoman capes don't match ANY of my suits (some fashionista get on that, please. Call me.), and I have yet to find a way to get professional credit for being a good doggie-mama. Oh, the challenges of the modern woman!

For a few months our better dinners will be on the weekends [actually, that's always true, but the disparity between Weeknight and Weekend is a little more pronounced]. I was cruising through some recipes I wanted to try and came across a sassy little Ellie Krieger number for Jerk Chicken with Cool Pineapple Salsa.

Never content to cook off the rack, I applied my own tailoring. Specifically I substituted tilapia for chicken and bottled jerk sauce for homemade. I had been an unsuspecting victim of a nap attack and, well, time and energy weren't my thing just then.

YAY for me, I had made the pineapple salsa the day before. That actually worked out better for the recipe, since it gave the flavors time to meld and the mint mellowed nicely. I had my doubts about the salsa initially, but the cooling off period worked great and we were able to have a healthy relationship. In fact, we may meet again (leftovers) with salmon tomorrow.

The pineapple salsa recipe is Ellie Krieger's; the rest of it is my daring improv.

3 or 4 tilapia filets (I used the frozen pack from Trader Joe's)
1/4 cup jerk sauce (Atlantans, mine was from DeKalb Farmer's Market)
2 TBSP oil, plus oil for the broiling rack

1. Move oven rack to the center of the oven. Neither fish nor sweetened sauces like to be too close to the heat.

2. Wipe down your broiler pan or rack with an oiled paper towel. This works better than cooking spray.

3. In a small bowl stir together oil and jerk sauce. Olive oil is going to give you an off flavor - vegetable, safflower, or canola oil is a better bet.

4. Place fish on broiler pan/rack and brush with oil and sauce mixture.

5. Broil for 4 minutes on each side.

1 TBSP honey
1 TBSP lime juice
1 cup finely diced pineapple
1/3 cup finely diced, seeded English cucumber (I used regular cucumber and seeds are fine with me)
1 TBSP chopped fresh mint leaves (yes, fresh - you can also add them to ice water for a terrific refresher)

Combine all. Store refrigerated.

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