Last week on the blog, I made an entry about my trip to Philadelphia and the amazing food I had at Mixto, a Cuban restaurant in the Washington Square West neighborhood of Philly. The flavors of the food inspired me to make my own Cuban dish.
The meal I decided to tackle is Arroz con Pescado. When I was researching Cuban meals to try, I found that a lot of the results lead me to Arroz con pollo (Rice with Chicken). However not everyone in our house eats chicken, so instead I opted to make Arroz con pescado (Rice with Fish). The recipe that I used to create this meal is a fusion of two I found on the web. For the rice, I used a recipe from Sweet Paul Magazine which you can find here. For the fish, I used the recipe from Three Guys from Miami, which is an amazing, very informative blog. Check it out here! You’ll notice that I took some ingredients out completely or added my own.
To make this dish you’ll need the following ingredients:
2 lbs. of salmon, or a fish of your choice
½ cup olive oil
juice of ½ lemon
juice of ½ lime
3 cloves of garlic
1 tsp salt
½ tsp of black pepper
¼ cup cilantro, chopped
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. of saffron
3 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 green, bell pepper
3 ½ cup of medium-length rice
1 cup of dry white wine
4 cups water
¼ lb. asparagus, rinsed and snapped
1 yellow onion, grated
1 cup of pimientos, sliced
½ cup tomato paste
1 cube of vegetable bouillon
3 garlic cloves
1 tsp of salt
1 tsp. of saffron
1 cup peas, frozen
Note: If you don’t like asparagus, you can opt for another vegetable like corn.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- Wash and cut salmon into personal, fillet size portions.
- In a large bowl, mix the marinade ingredients including the olive oil, lemon, lime, garlic, salt, black pepper, cilantro, oregano, saffron and red pepper flakes.
- Once mixed, get out a large plate. Take salmon pieces and dredge through the marinade, piece by piece.
- Once the pieces are marinated, cover the plate with plastic wrap and set in the fridge for a least an hour.
- After an hour, put a large dutch oven on the stove with about 4 Tbsp of olive oil. Add the green bell pepper and sauté in oil.
- When the olive oil begins to smoke, NOT BUBBLE, remove and discard the pepper. Place salmon in dutch oven in batches. After about 2 minutes on each side, turn over. After each batch is done, simply move the salmon to a new plate.
- When all salmon is out of the pan, pour in 1 cup of the dry white wine. Take this opportunity to gently scrape up the brown pieces at the bottom of the pot.
- Add the rest of the ingredients to the pot including the water, asparagus, onions, half of the pimientos, tomato paste, bouillon, garlic, saffron, salt and peas. Bring to a simmer.
- Add rice to mixture and stir for 5 minutes on medium heat.
- Remove the dutch oven from the stovetop and place fish fillets on top of mixture.
- Cover with dutch oven lid and place in heated oven for 20 minutes.
- When done, remove from oven. Add the rest of the pimientos and garnish with fresh cilantro and slices of lemon.
You’ll notice that the original recipe called for Bijol seasoning. After about 20 minutes of scouring the shelves at my local grocery store, I realized I was not able to find that ingredient. Bijol seasoning is used primarily for the yellow color it gives the meat, or in this case fish. As a substitute for the Bijol, I used saffron which has the same effect but is much more expensive.