As a food writer, I totally want to keep things seasonal, but as a normal human being with taste buds, I just can’t tell my tongue there’s only a certain time of year to crave some dishes. Besides, who doesn’t love the idea of bright, citrusy salsa that seriously tastes like a margarita? (No joke, I made a separate batch with tequila and ice that I’ll tell you about in another post!). What about creamy avocado, nutty brown rice and spicy shrimp that won’t effect your waistline?
Just like my ingredient challenge from awhile back, this was another one of those last minute, use what you have kind of meals. (If I hadn’t done production for Chopped, I would probably consider being a contestant….) It’s such a fun game to pull together a balanced dish with the options provided right under my roof.
Fortunately, last night all the stars aligned and these yummy Cajun shrimp tacos were born. A little heat hits your tongue from this very lean, low-fat, low-cal protein, while a bit of tang and salt from the yummy pineapple/orange/lime salsa balances the spice and perfectly combines inside satisfyingly crunchy taco shells amidst fiber-laden brown rice and cool, omega-3 filled avocado. Deeelish even in the winter!
(Makes about 4 hard tacos)
1 lb medium, tails-off, pre-cooked frozen shrimp (that’s a mouthful. Get it?!)
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
Pineapple juice (from a 20 oz. can crushed pineapple)
1/2 cup crushed pineapple
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 cups brown rice
4 hard taco shells
Empty pineapple into a colander and drain liquid into a bowl or measuring cup.
Rinse shrimp under hot water until defrosted and drain water.
Transfer shrimp to a bowl and sprinkle with Cajun seasoning.
Add pineapple juice.
Allow to marinate for 10-20 minutes.
In the meantime, cut orange in half and remove the white center with a pairing knife.
Slice each half into segments and scoop out center.
Chop orange segments into smaller chunks and transfer to a bowl with 1/2 cup crushed pineapple.
Add lime juice and Kosher salt. Mix well.
Cook brown rice according to directions and set aside.
Transfer shrimp and about 2 tablespoons of marinade to a pan coated with cooking spray.
Sautee about two minutes on each side, being careful not to over cook.
Remove shrimp from heat and set up your taco shells on a plate.
Spoon about two tablespoons of rice to the bottom of each shell.
Add some shrimp.
Cover with about 1/4 of an avocado.
Top with margarita citrus salsa.
Eat and enjoy in whatever season works for you!