I have a list of things I want to do. One of them is to cook every recipe in a cookbook so I’m working my way through Rick Bayless’ Everyday Mexican. I’ve eaten a lot of good stuff. This series is the record of those adventures.
Note: This recipe really made me sad about my food styling skills: I wanted so badly for the pictures to reflect how delicious this fish was, but natural light is starting to be in very short supply so you make do with what you got, right? Cue end to my pity party.
I'll put the spoiler up front: this dish was delicious. Crazy delicious! Soak up all the sauce with some tortilla chips after you are done, contemplate licking the pan delicious. In general I'm not a fan of trout or green beans. I don't dislike them, they're just un-exciting. Macadamia nuts are a different story. They are yummy and expensive. This makes me both happy and anxious cause I hate ruining expensive ingredients.
I served this to my family and two of my friends. We ate it in the backyard in late fall on a beautiful night. My presentation? Not so beautiful! When I served it, it looked exactly like the picture below: Yikes!
The "rusticness" of its appearance aside, this dish was heaven. It reminded me a lot of Asian food in that it was perfectly balanced: it had heat (chile), acid (lime), sweet (green beans) and salty (toasted macadamia nuts). Improvement in my ability to balance flavors has been one of the best things I've learned throughout the cookbook project. Each week I've been working with very similar ingredients and flavors. I think that the repetition has allowed me to pay closer attention to technique and preparation. I don't have to ask myself what to do with poblano chiles, I know how to prep those suckers in my sleep. Knowing the basics allows me to pay more attention to balancing flavors. Similarly at the end of each recipe Rick reminds me to taste and adjust. I follow the instruction each time and I like to think it's improved my cooking: one taco at a time.