I love Mexican food , I enjoy the cuisine for its very simplicity and fresh approach. Last Tuesday , with an impending blizzard headed for Chicago, I met up with my expatriate friends and we cooked up another storm of wonderful recipes. While a meteorological storm started brewing outside, safe in the kitchen we ignored the elements , talked about the latest happenings in our families, lent moral support where needed , all the while, whipping up three fantastic dishes , the first of which I am blogging about is "filete Rodrigo".
The name alone intrigues me. hope the photos do it justice - photographing indoors in a Chicago winter - presents several challenging technical problems.
I do not know much about the origins if this specific dish, just enough to say that it is named after the chef who created it and bless him, because it is an outstanding little morsel of goodness.
This is a great meal to be enjoyed family style, presents well ( as pictured above) as an appetiser and I guarantee you .... absolute WOW factor at your next cocktail party . We enjoyed it family style on some warmed corn tortillas , smothered with the fresh tomatillo salsa, which was superb . When I got home because i did not have any tortillas I thought it would make a nice presentation on blue corn tortilla chips.
The fish mixture was a savoury combination of tilapia, white onion, fresh cilantro and maggi seasoning ( secret ingredient ) if you do not have any a touch of tamari soy sauce will do the trick - or you can omit all together.
The salsa was fresh, vibrant in colour, spicy in flavour that made your mouth come alive - the salsa was good enough to enjoy with tortilla chips or tostada.
Next time it is taco night at your home , consider serving a very light and healthy fish taco night where I am sure even the pickiest eater will be challenged to completely convince themselves that this is not worthy of eating.
So thank you to Teresa, my mexican friend, for preparing such a delightful dish to enjoy and giving us another authentic taste of mexican cuisine.
Filete Rodrigo with fresh Tomatillo Salsa
6 large tomatillos - husks removed
3 jalapenos peppers
2 serrano peppers ( optional) small white onion
salt and pepper to taste
Wash and roughly chop the tomatillos and place in a bowl, use a hand held blender to make into a coarse puree. Add the jalapenos seeds included - check for spiciness and add the serano peppers if you would like more heat to the dish.
At this point depending on the heat level of the jalapeno peppers you can add more jalapeno or more serrano. When we were making this dish the jalapenos lacked spice so we added the serranos which certainly made up for the lack of spiciness and made the dish more tasty.
Once you get the desired consistency of salsa add some finely diced white onion and chopped fresh cilantro. Add salt and pepper and check for taste - adjust is needed then allow to sit on the side to allow the flavours to develop.
Season the tilapia with salt and pepper and cook in a non stick pan with a little olive oil , until is is cooked through and flakes easily.
Place in a bowl and allow to cool .
Meanwhile , finely dice one small white onion, add to the flaked and cooled fish along with a splash of both maggi seasoning and white vinegar. toss to combine then add the chopped cilantro - check for seasoning and adjust accordingly.
To serve family style, warm up some corn tortillas add some of the fish mixture then top with the salsa and enjoy the incredible taste sensation.