Looking for a tangy and tropical dish to spice things up from your usual salmon prep? This pan-seared Caribbean mango coconut salmon from chef Dana Venuto is the perfect dish to try something new while utilizing the same salmon flavors you already love.
We’re combining the traditional tropical flavors of mango and beans with the satisfying tones of basmati rice and coconut milk to create a dish that is equal parts flavorful and colorful. With the richness of coconut milk, the kick from jalapeño peppers, and the subtle sweetness of mango, this pan-seared salmon will be one to bookmark for fun dinners and exciting meal preps.
What’s the Deal with Coconut?
While most fruits are filled with sugar and carbs, coconut is packed with protein, antioxidants, and vitamins. They’re filled with iron and copper too, which are helpful in forming red blood cells. Coconut also contains high levels of magnesium, which facilitate a healthy metabolism and strong bone health. Coconut, especially coconut oil, can be vastly beneficial for heart health and improve cholesterol levels. The best thing about the awesome benefits of coconut? It’s wildly easy to add to your diet. With the production of the fruit being as malleable as it is, coconut is easy to find in various forms. With milk, oil, extract, and flakes, coconut is an essential ingredient that’s quick and fun to toss in dishes while getting some extra protein and health benefits in the process.
What About Mango?
Similar to coconut, mango is an essential fruit that is filled with antioxidants, nutrients, and vitamins. Mango is linked to improving digestive health and even containing vitamins that support eye health. Studies have also found that the vitamin C in mango can contribute to healthy skin and hair. The polyphenols in mango additionally support hair by protecting the follicles against damage. Talk about a super food, right?
But How Do These Fruits Work in the Kitchen?
Both mango and coconut are easily workable in the kitchen as their flavors are poignant yet subtle when used as ingredients in certain dishes. Both fruits are sweet, but not overpowering, so their flavor works alongside other ingredients to tie a dish together and help complement other elements while cooking.
What About This Dish?
We’re combining the sweetness of mango and richness of coconut with the spicy kicks of jalapeño and cayenne pepper to even out their flavors in a pleasantly surprising tropical meal. Every ingredient in this dish works together to create the perfect balance of sweet and spicy.
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. While the oven is heating up, cook the rice and beans, and then combine the two in the same pot.
Heat up a cast iron pan with coconut oil. Char the jalapeños on all sides. Once charred, remove from the pan to deseed and chop. Then chop the mango and tomatoes. Sauté mangos, tomatoes, and charred peppers in a warm skillet greased with coconut oil and cook for 3-5 minutes. Once the mango, tomatoes, and jalapeños are cooked and soft, add 1 cup of coconut milk and simmer lightly.
Heat the remaining coconut milk and add to rice and bean medley. Add a pinch of cayenne pepper to taste. Heat greased grill pan and dust salmon fillets with salt, pepper, and pinch of cayenne. Pan sear the fillets skin side down for 2 minutes on each side. Place the grill pan in the oven bake for 12 minutes.
Plate rice and beans with baked salmon fillets, and top with the mango coconut sauce. Finish it off with chopped scallions and enjoy!