10 years ago, if you’d told me that I’d move to the far west, cookie-cutter suburbs of Houston and judge most of the restaurants frequent-visit list by the quality of their playground and not necessarily the food, I might have laughed in your face.
Probably would have, actually. All those margaritas I made with Mrs Ts neon-green bottled mix would have no-doubt left me pretty giggly.
But here we are 10 years later. In the far west, cookie-cutter suburbs of Houston. And we judge most of the restaurants that we frequently visit by the presence of a playground, the quality of said playground, and lastly: the food.
One of those restaurants shoots to the top of that list simply because of the playground. Because why else would anyone pay more for average TexMex when you can get better, for less?
But we have a 4 year old with endless amounts of squeals and climb-up-the-slide energy. And they have free ice cream and a covered playground smack-dab in the middle of the cookie-cutter suburbs. They are, as you can imagine, raging successful.
And sometimes being able to talk over a bowl of chips and green sauce on a patio while The Little plays 20 feet away is totally worth it. So you pick your battles. And I made peace with it once I discovered their Fish Tacos with double Cucumber-Mango salsa. Because the fresh, crunchy, and sweet salsa has been the best thing I’ve tasted there.
At home, we ditch the oily coleslaw and heavy chipotle mayo that comes on the restaurant version in favor of keeping it light and simple: chile-lime grilled fish, thin slices of avocado, cucumber-mango salsa, and whatever crumbled cheese I have (queso fresco or goat cheese).
Fresh, bright, light, and flavorful. And if we had a rocking playground like that our backyard, we’d never have to go back.
Grilled Chile-Lime Fish Tacos with Cucumber-Mango Salsa
Flaky white fish seasoned with chile and lime is topped with a sweet, fresh scoop of cucumber and mango salsa and queso fresco.
- For the fish:
- 1 lb tilapia
- 1 lime, cut into wedges
- Chile powder (I used chipotle)
- Olive oil
- For serving:
- 1/2 cup diced mango
- 1/2 cup diced cucumber
- 1/4 cup diced red onion
- Small handful of cilantro, chopped
- 1 small jalapeno, seeded and chopped
- Crumbled cheese (queso fresco or goat cheese)
- Preheat your grill to medium-high.
- Squeeze a couple of lime wedges over the fish and then season both sides with salt, pepper, and dust with chile powder.
- When the grill is heated, lightly spray/brush the filets with olive oil and cook for ~4 minutes each side.
- In a medium bowl, stir together the mango, cucumber, red onion, cilantro, and jalapeno with a pinch of salt and the juice from 1-2 lime wedges (to taste).
- Squeeze the remaining limes over the fish when it comes off the grill.
- Flake the fish into large bite-sized pieces and serve on tortillas topped with a generous scoop of salsa and crumbled cheese.
Yields: ~6 servings
Estimated time: 30 minutes