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Fish 4 Friday: Grilled Salmon With Pineapple Salsa

This entry is part of a series, F4F 2011»

Sliced Pineapple

There are a number of very appetizing beers made in Mexico. Most folks know about Corona, a drinkable lager and the best-selling non-domestic beer in the States. Other recognizable labels include Pacifico, Negra Modelo, Dos XX, Tecate and Bohemia. I’m partial to the darker beers, with their smooth taste and solid, amber color.

Most folks don’t know about using beer as a marinade, especially for fruit. It works, though! Again, I think the darker, more full-flavored brews are ideal for this application. Beer adds a yeasty, nutty flavor to the fruit, and then to anything the fruit is used in. Such as a salsa.

Today’s F4F recipe uses the special properties of beer as a marinade to produce a great-tasting, grilled fish meal:

Got a bottle of a good, dark Mexican beer. Set aside a half-cup of the brew, and then use the remainder to keep the cook happy. I think you’d be most happy with Negra Modelo or Bohemia Obscura (their darker variety). Corona, or another light lager, probably won’t flavor the pineapple much; only consider using them if the crew you’ll be feeding don’t really like beer flavor. (I’d still go with the darker options, as really there’s not that much flavor transfer from the marinade to the pineapple. If you use something light, it’ll be hard to notice.)

If salmon’s not readily available to you, use most any firm-fleshed fish: Tuna, mahi-mahi, and so on. If you’re not sure what to use, ask your fishmonger. They’ll know the best options.

If you’re the adventurous type, use some habañero chile in the salsa. It’ll be a lot zestier, but the fruity flavor of that chile will shine through with the pineapple. Surprisingly, the extra heat won’t mask the essence of the fish either. I don’t know how that works, exactly, but it’s a nice feature of habañero that the scorching heat doesn’t somehow kill the other stuff’s flavors (or your tastebuds)…

Enjoy the (Tropical Grilled Fish) Heat!


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