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Friday, September 2, 2011

Fiesta Mexicana!

I have a confession to make...I LOVE Mexican food!

Unfortunately you can't get good Mexican in Australia that I'm aware of. Of course, what we call Mexican here in most of the US is in the same class as Chinese food here in the's westernised.

But, you take what you can get and I can't really get enough.

Tonight I made Restaurant style Salsa, Mexican Rice and Fish Taco's. It's a bit time consuming with the preparation, but I think, it's worth the effort.

Restaurant Style Salsa


1 can (28 oz) whole tomatoes with juice

2 cans (10 oz) diced tomatoes and green chilies

1/4 cup chopped onion

1 clove garlic, minced

1 whole jalapeno, quartered and sliced thin (this can be left out if you don't like it hot)

1/4 tsp sugar

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp ground cumin

1/2 cup cilantro (coriander) or more to taste

Juice of 1/2 whole Lime

Preparation Instructions:

Note: this is a very large batch. Recommend using a 12-cup food processor, or you can process the ingredients in batches and then mix everything together in a large mixing bowl. I actually halved this recipe and it still made a heap. As I mentioned above, if you don't like it hot (like me) or kids are going to eat it, leave the jalapeno out. Also, add as much cilantro for your taste.

Combine whole tomatoes, diced tomatoes and green chilies, onion, jalapeno, garlic, sugar, salt, cumin, lime juice, and cilantro in a blender or food processor.

Pulse until you get the salsa to the consistency you'd like. Test seasonings with a tortilla chip and adjust as needed.

Refrigerate salsa for at least an hour.

And it ends up looking like this: 

We ended up having to put it in the fridge, otherwise we'd have eaten it all!

Traditional Mexican Rice Side Dish


1 cup uncooked rice
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups cold water
½ onion - chopped
1 tbsp chicken bouillon
¼ cup tomato sauce
Roma tomato, chopped into 8 pieces
1 tsp cumin powder (or seeds crushed into powder)
1 chili pepper, sliced lengthwise
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt to taste


Put the oil into a medium saucepan and heat to a medium temperature. Add the rice and brown it in the oil while stirring.

Add the garlic when the rice is nearly browned.

Add the water, then the rest of the ingredients. Mix well. Cover, with a small air escape, and turn the heat down to medium low. You want the mixture to simmer.

Cook the rice for 25 minutes but check after 20 to see if it is ready.

You do not need to stir the rice or lift the lid while it cooks. It is ready when the rice is fluffy, all the water is gone, and the grains are split open (because of the browning).

If it is still sauce-like rather than dry, cook a few minutes more. 

Grilled Fish Tacos

Ingredients for Tacos:

1 Mahi Mahi fillet per 2 tacos - you can also use Ahi Tuna, Salmon or any firm fleshed white fish

Flour tortillas

Grated Mexican cheese

Shredded lettuce

Ingredients for Pico de Gallo:

1.5lbs ripe tomatoes, seeded and diced

1/3 cup finely chopped onion

¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro (coriander) – best done in a food processor

2 jalapenos finely chopped – best done in a food processor

2 tsps lime juice

Salt to taste

Ingredients for Chipotle sauce:

½ cup mayonnaise

½ tsp Chipotle powder – hot sauce can be substituted

2 tbsp lime juice


1.    Prepare the Pico de Gallo. Combine all ingredients and set aside for at least 15 minutes for flavour to combine.

2.    Prepare the Chipotle sauce. Combine ingredients in a bowl and chill until ready to use.

3.    Prepare the tortillas. Grill or warm tortillas and wrap in foil until ready to use.

4.    Prepare the fish. Rinse fillets and dry with paper towel. Season with salt, pepper and olive oil. Grill or dry fry fish for 4-6 minutes.

5.    Prepare the tacos. Place fish on tortilla; top with a spoonful (or more) Pico de Gallo, lettuce and cheese. Drizzle Chipotle sauce on top. Enjoy!

And finally, this is what we had for dinner.
As always, Enjoy!



  1. Oh wow Matt .... That looks awesome. Love the recipes...might try it myself next weekend

  2. Thank you M...had to work out who you were for a minute! Now I know, borealis. LOL

  3. Really enjoying the blog Matt. Made the salsa for hubby. 2 jalepenos was not hot enough for him but he definitely says he loves it over bottled salsa and that is saying something. He has been a Pace man forever. Going to try the fish tacos this weekend.


  4. Glad you and he like it! Wait for the end of the month...Aussie Fish and Chips with ALL the usual suspects except Chicko Rolls.