Ever since I made this salad, I’ve been wanting to combine the spicy goodness of blackening seasoning with sweet mango again. These blackened salmon tacos are every bit as good as that salad (maybe better?!).
The pickled cabbage salsa is a favorite of mine. It’s inspiration is a restaurant in Bend (Oregon, where I’m from!) that serves a cabbage salsa with tortilla chips. I loved it so much, I tried to recreate it at home, but could never get it right. I finally asked the bartender at the restaurant (El Caporal) how it was made, and I was missing one key ingredient- the sweetness came from orange juice. Now, mine is just as good as theirs!
A few years ago, some friends and I had a BBQ, and made a ton of food. I made this cabbage salsa, along with a bean dip and a regular salsa, for the chips. No one touched the cabbage. What is wrong with people?! So good. I actually didn’t try too hard to encourage everyone. It gets better after a day (when it’s really pickled!), and I can eat it by the spoonful. In fact, last night, after the salmon was gone, I wrapped up a big spoonful of this salsa in a tortilla on it’s own.
You know what else I made for the party that was left over at the end of the night? A giant platter of grilled eggplant, carrots, zucchini, and fennel, all marinated in balsamic. I guess veggies aren’t the most tempting option when people are drinking.
I personally love to see veggie dishes when I am at a party, or drinking a little. Drinking makes you want to eat, for sure! So, it’s either nibbling on chips all night, or on vegetables. But yes, I do know my fanaticism for vegetables isn’t shared by everyone.
Corn tortillas are a luxury here. You can’t buy them at a regular grocery store. I have actually brought big stacks of them back from trips to the States in my suitcase. I’ve also made my fair share of tortillas from scratch during the last 4 years. A friend of mine told me she buys them at Ampang Mini Mart, and offered to pick me some up. They were about $8– pricey, compared to the $2 we pay in the US. Totally worth it! They are really thin, my favorite, and have a really authentic flavor.
I think corn tortillas are much, much better than flour. I prefer the taste and chewy texture. Also, 1 thin corn tortilla has 40 calories, and a small flour tortilla has 160 calories. If you have two tacos, using corn instead of flour saves you 240 calories. So you can eat an extra tortilla stuffed with salsa after the salmon is gone 🙂
- 2 cups cabbage, sliced thinly
- 1 medium tomato, diced small
- 1 jalapeno, diced finely (test how spicy it is before adding the whole jalapeno! Mine was on the mild side)
- ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
- ⅓ cup cilantro, minced
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 orange, juiced (or ¼ cup orange juice)
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- ½ pound salmon fillet
- ½ teaspoon honey
- 1½ teaspoons blackening seasoning
- 5 corn tortillas
- blackened salmon
- cabbage salsa
- ½ large mango, sliced thinly
- After preparing the vegetables for the cabbage salsa, combine them in a covered container. Add the dressing ingredients, and shake to coat well. Add more orange juice or sea salt, to taste.
- Coat the salmon fillet with honey and blackening seasoning.
- In a non-stick frying pan, cook the salmon skin-side down (if it has skin) for 5 minutes on medium-high heat, covered.
- Flip the salmon, and cook for 7-10 minutes uncovered. Check from time to time to make sure it's blackening, but not burning. If needed, remove the skin and make sure the salmon is cooked to your liking throughout.
- Heat tortillas in the oven or the toaster on a low setting (I love the crunch they get in the toaster!).
- Layer salmon, salsa, and mango slices in the tortillas.