It is slowly sinking in. I’m slowly beginning to come in terms with it. With the fact that maybe, just maybe… vacation is over. Chutti Khatam, School Shuru (vacation’s over, now its back to school.)
I was in India for pretty much the whole summer. Hopping between cities, juggling airplanes, trains and road trips. Meeting relatives and friends, some age old, some new. Relishing the best food one can wish for. Some from the roadside, some from the fanciest of restaurants and some from the comforts of mummy’s kitchen. Getting pampered and watching the kids being spoilt rotten. The streets, the aroma, the flavors, the chaos. Gosh, what a treat India is! I was born there, grew up there and after moving out, now try to go back as frequently as I can and as many times. But still every time I visit I’m welcomed by something new that surprises you and when you leave, you leave with a sense of longing in you.
Its a strange feeling when you leave now. Of course you do not want to leave home, the place you were born in and the place that made you. But then you also want to come back home, the place and life you built for yourself. You do not want to leave one for the other, but you always, always have to! But then I guess many immigrants like me must face this and what is life without difficult choices and dilemmas.
Speaking of difficult choices, there was another one I had to make a while back when developing a recipe for a fun event hosted by California Avocados. So, California Avocados was planning to launch a Summer Soundtrack cookbook pairing some fun music with delicious recipes. Now as fun as this theme sounds, my mind was bombarding with ideas. There was so much you could do with this and I had so much fun playing around with different recipes and while at it, ate avocados till my body turned green!
Finally I narrowed down to this recipe- Cajun Fish Taco with Spicy Avocado Crema and Mango Salsa. Its spicy, its sweet, its creamy, packs a punch, fun to eat and a delight to share. The folks at California Avocados agreed with me and featured the recipe in their Summer Soundtrack Cookbook. So follow the link here and hop on to their website and download this recipe and and many others, by some super creative chefs and recipe developers.
1/2 Avocado (approx. 1/2 cup) diced
1/4 cup onion (chopped)
1/4 cup tomato (chopped)
1 cup mango (peeled and diced)
1 teaspoon lime juice
1/2 cup cilantro (chopped)
2 tablespoon jalapeno (deseeded and minced)
Bring all the ingredients together in a mixing bowl.
Toss. Cover and set aside for later us.
SPICY AVOCADO CREMA:
1 ripe avocado
1/4 cup créme fraish
1/2 cup cilantro
1 tablespoon lime juice
Bring all ingredients together in a food processor. Blend until smooth and creamy.
Set in the refrigerator until ready to use.
1 pound tilapia fillet (cut into finger length pieces.)
1/2 cup all purpose flour
3-4 tablespoon fine semolina
2 teaspoon cajun spice mix
1/4 cup water.
Oil for deep frying
Beat eggs and water together in a pasta bowl or a shallow bowl. Set aside.
In another pasta bowl or a shallow bowl mix together flour, semolina and cajun spice mix.
One piece at a time drop fish first in the flour mix, then egg and back to the flour mix.
Drop immediately in hot oil (temp. 350 deg. F) and fry until the outer coating is golden brown in color and the fish is cooked through.
8-10 corn flour tortilla
3/4 purple cabbage (chopped)
1/2 cup sweet white corn kernels.
ASSEMBLING THE TACOS:
Heat or roast tortilla over open flame or grill or a skillet.
Place one cajun fried fish in the middle of the tortilla.
Put approx. 1 tablespoon purple cabbage in your taco, followed by mango salsa and corn kernels. Drizzle a little bit of spicy avocado crema and serve with some chilled beer or margarita.