Friday, February 12, 2016

Chipotle Shrimp Tacos with Sumo Citrus Salsa

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John, Paul, Ringo and George had it right when they taught us that we all need a little help from our friends. I mean, let's be honest guys, how many times has a good friend come through for you by introducing you to something new, that quickly became one of your favorite things in the whole world? Case in point: the Sumo Citrus. Or, Sumo Mandarin, or most-amazing-citrus-ever, as I've come to call it. It all started with a message -- a single message: "Have you tried Sumos?" Followed by a "no." Which was followed by a "Okay, we'll make it happen." And now, I can't get enough.

The Sumo is a large, seedless, amazingly sweet mandarin that was originally developed in Japan (known as the Dekopon) and is now grown on family farms in my neck of the woods (Central California). They're a cross between a Japanese Satsuma and a sweet California Orange. You can spot these bad boys by their unique look: huge, bright orange, large knot at the top and their ability to be peeled in one piece with hardly any effort. 

As soon as I took apart my first Sumo, and saw how the juices were kept perfectly contained within each section, I knew they would be amazing to use for cooking. When it comes to chopping up citrus, a lot of the time it ends up being a mushy mess and that's just not fun for anyone.

I love using fruit in my salsas. I love the sweetness they bring, and they pair oh-so-perfectly with cilantro, onion and jalapeño. The Sumo mandarins are the perfect ingredient because they dice beautifully and all that gorgeous, vibrant juice is kept perfectly in place. See what I mean?

I'm a huge fan of pretty colors when it comes to food, and, seriously... You can't get any prettier than this! 

A little sweet, a little spicy... you've got your cilantro happening and the bite of the onion... Pure perfection! There are so many things you could put this on that would be delicious -- fish, chicken, pork... but, my favorite has to be... 

Shrimp! Fruit salsas are perfect with shrimp. So perfect. They were meant for each other. Now, shrimp tossed with some chipotle? Even better. You can adjust the chipotle and get the heat you like. We like ours with very little heat. We're not super spicy people, we just love the smokiness that chipotle brings to the table. It's not a party until chipotle shows up!

Now, those are some tasty looking tacos, if I do say so myself. If you take Taco Tuesday seriously, like you should, you're going to want to make these next time. If you're one of those people who likes to eat tacos on days that don't begin with "Tues," you can just make them whenever. They'll still be just as delicious. Maybe even more delicious... who knows!

If you can't get Sumos in your area, you can order them online in an awesome 8-pack that's all wrapped up in a pretty package! Order here.

Chipotle Shrimp Tacos with Sumo Citrus Salsa:

  • 1 Large Sumo Mandarin, diced
  • 1/2 cup diced red onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 Jalapeño, seeded and diced
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons chipotle powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • 1/2 cup shredded cabbage (the red works really well in this recipe!)
  • 1/2 cup crumbled queso fresco
  • Limes, quartered


Combine Sumo pieces, onion, cilantro and jalapeño and place in the refrigerator while you prepare the other ingredients.

In a small bowl, toss shrimp, olive oil, chipotle, oregano, salt & pepper together to coat. Heat a grill pan over high heat for a couple of minutes, until it's ridiculously hot. Place about half of your shrimp in the pan and cook for about 1 minute per side for small shrimp, 2-3 minutes for medium and 3-4 minutes for large. Remove when shrimp are cooked through.

Meanwhile, heat your corn tortillas over your burners (it will give them lovely little char marks) and assemble your tacos. I used about a heaping tablespoon of the salsa over each taco and it was just enough! Serve tacos with lime wedges for squeezing. 

Makes 8 Tacos.

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