A sister birthday dinner (Pan seared Tilapia with strawberry avocado salsa)

I always cook my middle sister a yummy dinner for her birthday.  Last year it was some delicious duck and a random veggie concoction.  This year I was going to do her favorite, lamb, which is not my favorite (that's what a good sister I am!).  Turns out, her birthday was on Ash Wednesday.  Being the good Catholic she is, she requested seafood.  I wanted to opt for vegetarian since I am not a seafood person, but she is breastfeeding and Ruby is averse to most green veggies and beans, so seafood it was.  

I tear out recipes all the time from the magazines to which I subscribe, namely, Real Simple, Better Homes and Gardens and Food and Wine.  I had one on my fridge for tilapia and salsa from Real Simple and I decided to make that.  But to make it more local with some local strawberries instead of grapefruit. I figured avocado, cilantro and green onions were not as agitating as most greens, and I was not wrong. This was so simple, fresh and delicious, a really easy weeknight meal! I served it with roasted non green veggies which will be forthcoming.

Make this, you will not be disappointed. It made the birthday girl, brother in law and gentleman caller all happy as well as me! The salsa is probably great with chicken or steak too or just on its own.  Full recipe to follow the montage.

Pan Seared Tilapia with Strawberry Avocado Salsa
A colorful light meal perfect for lent and when you are dreaming of summer
Pan Seared Tilapia with Strawberry Avocado Salsa
The cast for the salsa minus the avocado because I forgot it and my brother in law had to go get more.  Forgetting the avocado is becoming a theme for me...
Pan Seared Tilapia with Strawberry Avocado Salsa
Just so beautiful.  So much color!
cute nieces
Speaking of beautiful, these little princesses were quite the helpers/peanut gallery! They had Stephen Gurley gravy for dinner instead.
I gave my sweet sister some tulips for her birthday.  
Happy Birthday Mommy!
We sang happy birthday and gave them cake before bed so we could eat in peace.
Pan Seared Tilapia with Strawberry Avocado Salsa
And here is the fish, two big ones for the guys and two little ones for the ladies.

Pan Seared Tilapia with Strawberry Avocado Salsa
Sear them for a spell in some butter.  Yes, butter, it's okay!

Pan Seared Tilapia with Strawberry Avocado Salsa
Plate with salsa and enjoy!
Pan seared Tilapia with strawberry avocado salsa (adapted from Real Simple)
1/2 pint of strawberries, hulled and chopped
1 large ripe avocado, diced
1 small shallot, diced
¼ cup roasted, salted pumpkin seeds
¼ cup cilantro leaves and tender stems
juice of one lime
¼ cup olive oil, divided
1½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 teaspoon black pepper, divided
4 6-oz. boneless, skinless tilapia fillets

Gently combine strawberries, avocado, shallot, pumpkin seeds, cilantro, lime juice, 2 tablespoons oil, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl.  Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a cast iron skillet over medium-high. Season tilapia with remaining ½ teaspoon pepper and ¾ teaspoon salt. Reduce heat to medium and cook 2 fillets until golden and just cooked through, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate; repeat with remaining 1 tablespoon oil and 2 fillets. Serve tilapia with salsa.

Happy cooking!


No comments