Cornmeal Crusted Tilapia With Pico De Gallo and Rice

Our neighbor’s grandma makes some of the best pico de gallo I have ever had and I have been asking for a year for her to show me how to make it.  The other night we had dinner over there and she was making – the next day I went out and bought the ingredients.  I had the ingredients, now I had to figure out what else to make it with.  I have been try to incorporate more fish into our diet and at the market the tilapia looked good and it checked out on seafood watch app.  Now how to make the tilapia so that it complimented the pico and the pico complimented it.

Pico De Gallo


1 medium sized tomato
3/4 of a medium sized spanish or vidalia onion
1/2 cup torn up cilantro
1 tsp or to taste of Tabasco or other hot sauce
Ground sea salt, to taste
Fresh lemon juice (about 1/4 of a lemon)
1 Tbl low sugar, organic ketchup


1. In a small food processor add the torn cilantro and 3/4 of the tomato.  Slice the tomato like you would for a salad.


2. Pulse the cilantro and tomato to make room for the onion.

3. Add the 3/4 of the onion.  Sliced like the tomato.

4. Pour about a tablespoon of water into the mixture. Pulse the ingredients, you may have to stop and stir. You want it in small chunks, but not pureed. When there is enough room add the rest of the tomato.  Pulse again.

5. Pour into a bowl squeeze 1/4 of a lemon and stir.

6. Add the Tabasco or hot sauce, tasting along the way.  I like mine with a bite. Mix.

7. Add the ketchup and salt to taste.


Cornmeal Crusted Tilapia


Tilapia fillets
Cornmeal (amount depends on how many fillets)
Lemon juice (again amount depends on how many fillets)
Coconut oil.

1. Wash the fillets in cold water and pat dry.

2. Put the cornmeal and lemon juice in wide, shallow bowls.

3. Dredge the tilapia in the cornmeal, then the lemon juice and then again in the cornmeal.  Let the fillets sit for 5 – 10 minutes.

4. Heat the coconut oil in a saute pan.  When the oil is hot add the fillets.  You do not want to crowd them.


5. Fry each side for about 3 – 5 minutes – you want it browned.

6. Place the fillets on paper towel so that the excess oil is absorb.


Serve over a bed of rice and top with a good size dollop (or more) of the pico de gallo.  It is a nice combination of flavors. The fish is very crunchy.  I loved it – my daughter Stella did not – oh well.


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