Red Snapper with Strawberry Avocado Salsa


Don’t get me wrong, I love a good fish fry, and during Lent there are many to choose from in Cedar Rapids. However, a person can only eat so much deep-fried fish, and I really do not like deep frying anything, let alone fish, inside my house. (I set up my fryer outside or in the garage when I do deep-fry.)

This red snapper topped with a strawberry-avocado salsa is a welcome flavor fest this time of year and it just may get you through the last days of winter doldrum.

The red snapper can be cooked several different ways for this recipe and each of them are equally good. I have grilled, pan seared, and broiled the fish while making this and each time with excellent results.

If using a gas grill, I like to heat the grill to high temperature and then turn the burners down. This gets the grates very hot and the residual heat helps cook the foods. You will need a good 15 to 20 minutes to get the grill up to its high temp and then another 10 to 15 minutes for the grill to balance out the temperature to your desired cooking temp.

If broiling, begin with fish skin side up about 6 inches from broiler.

If pan-searing, you will need an additional 2 tablespoons of your preference of olive or vegetable oil. I recommend using a cast iron skillet if pan-searing.

Here is what I did:

Red Snapper with Strawberry Avocado Salsa


1 jalapeño pepper, stemmed, seeded and finely chopped
2 cups strawberries, hulled and medium chopped
¼ cup finely chopped red onion
2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon lime juice
1 ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and diced
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 ½ tablespoon finely grated lime zest
4 (5- to 6-ounce) skin-on red snapper fillets


In a medium bowl, stir together jalapeños, strawberries, onions, cilantro, lime juice, avocado and salt to make a salsa. Set aside. I prefer to make this several hours ahead to allow the flavors to marry.

Preheat grill to medium heat, heat broiler to high, or heat 2 tablespoons oil in cast iron skillet on medium-high heat.

Meanwhile, prep the fish by combining oil and zest in a small bowl then brush all over both sides of fillets. Season both sides with salt and pepper. When grilling, grill fillets skin side down and do not flip. Grill until just cooked through and crisp around the edges; about 8 to 10 minutes. For pan-searing, begin with fish skin side down. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes and flip cooking an additional 4 to 5 minutes. If broiling, begin with the fish skin side down and broil for 3 to 4 minutes then flip and broil skin side up for and additional 5 to 6 minutes. For all methods of cooking, the fish will become opaque and easily flake when thoroughly cooked. Remove and discard skin and transfer to plates. Top with salsa and serve.

Cedar Planked Grilled Salmon with Avocado Salsa

What I really like about salmon is the infinite ways it can be cooked and the wide range of seasonings you can use. Tonight I cooked our salmon on a cedar plank, one of my favorite ways by the way, and topped it with an avocado salsa. Not only was this dish very tasty, it was a double source of omega-3. Win-win!

Here’s what I did:


1 to 1 ½ lb salmon filet
1 tbs olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp black pepper

Avocado salsa
1 avocado, peeled, seeded and sliced
1 small red onion, sliced
1 large jalapeño peppers, diced or sliced (red if available)
Juice from 2 limes
3 tbs olive oil
2 tbs finely chopped cilantro
Salt to taste


Prior to grilling, soak a cedar plank in water for at least two hours.

In a glass bowl, mix the salt, coriander, cumin, paprika, onion and black pepper together. Rub the salmon with the seasoning mix and let the fish rest for at least 30 minutes.

Pre-heat the grill to medium heat: 350° to 375°.

Meanwhile combine the avocado, onion, jalapeño, cilantro, lime juice, olive oil and salt in a glass bowl and mix well, chill until ready to use.

Place the seasoned salmon on the soaked cedar plank and grill the salmon for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the salmon from the grill and allow to rest 5 to 10 additional minutes. Top with the avocado salsa and serve.

Bonus Post! Guacamole!


I’ve been making a lot of things with avocados lately so I have been buying a lot of avocados. I have also been able to work on perfecting my guacamole.

Here’s what I did for my guacamole tonight:


3 ripe avocados
1 tomato, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 large jalapeño pepper, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon kosher salt
A few dashes of Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
Juice from one lime


Combine all ingredients in suitable bowl. Mash avocados with a fork and stir together until well combined. Some chunks of avocado should remain

Here is an informative site that explains how to buy avocados. Avocado Central

Tuna v.2: Pan Seared Tuna with Avocado

Tonight while in a store picking up a few last minute items needed to make tonight’s dinner I ran into a friend. She asked what I was making for dinner and I told her seared tuna steaks with avocado. Her response was, “You must have a lot more time than I do!” Here’s the funny thing: I returned home a little after six, changed clothes, checked on the batch of Sauvignon blanc wine I have fermenting and then started cooking. Susan and I were finished eating and cleaning up before seven.

Cooking tuna steaks are so quick; two minutes per side and they’re done. These were absolutely delicious.

Here’s what I did:


¼ cup chopped cilantro
2 teaspoons grated ginger
3 garlic cloves, minced
juice from 2 limes
¼ cup soy sauce
Several grinds of freshly ground black pepper
½ teaspoon sea salt
¼ cup walnut oil
2 tablespoons Canola or similar high temperature oil
2 Ahi Tuna steaks
1 ripe avocado
In a bowl, whisk together the cilantro, ginger, garlic, lime juice, soy sauce, salt, pepper, and walnut oil. Set aside.
Place a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat and coat with two tablespoons of Canola oil. Sear the tuna for two minutes on each side.
Transfer the seared tuna to plates and serve with the sliced avocado. Drizzle the sauce over the fish and avocado.