This May Send ME to the Windy City!

I’m taking a chance by entering a great contest. But I know, if you don’t “play” you don’t win. So with that said. I’m entering my Grilled Citrus-Chermoula Fish Tacos and Roasted Pepper Butter with Polenta Half-Moons in the BHG Chill and Grill Showdown Cook-Off VIDEO Recipe Contest

Chill & Grill

The website states: ” Two finalists  will receive an all-expenses paid trip for two to Better Homes and Gardens Magazine‘s and Weber’s Chill and Grill Festival™ in Chicago and will be paired with a celebrity chef to compete in the final Showdown-live on stage! One Grand Prize Winner will be chosen by our panel of judges as the Better Homes and Gardens next Great Griller!

The BHG Test Kitchen will select two finalists to compete for the Grand Prize at the Grilling Showdown based on the following criteria:
• On-air personality and grilling demo technique (30%)
• Recipe appeal/ease of preparation (30%)
• Recipe flavor and taste (40%)”

Per the rules, I created a 3 minute video of me grilling this dish. It is so very hard to even state name and the recipe in 3 minutes! It was also a windy day, which I thought it wasn’t supposed to be so windy. Unfortunately, I noticed the wind when I had already marinated the fish. So, “the show must go on” was in my thoughts. (When I have time, I may create the longer version of this recipe video to post.)

Regarding the recipe, Chermoula is a Moroccan marinade with lots of spice and flavor and usually consists of cilantro, paprika, cayenne pepper, or other pepper flavors. I added the citrus flavors and so glad I did. I also added vanilla extract which calms a little of the bitterness of the cilantro. I used Swai fish that is native to Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia). Also, glad I did. The fish was flaky and all stayed together. In the video, when turning the fish, it was the marinade that was falling off the fish, not the fish itself, which that’s great. The fish didn’t fall apart at all and really tasted great!!

The cherries were mascerated in lemon juice and balsamic vinegar. They were perfect. I probably would have grilled them a little longer and on hotter grates, but they added such great flavor along with the other flavors in the taco. The roasted red pepper butter was so great that I probably will never eat another seafood dish without a flavored butter again!

Well, enough said.  Here’s the 3 minute video and the recipe follows. Enjoy!

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Grilled Citrus-Chermoula Fish Tacos and Roasted Pepper Butter with Polenta Half-Moons

Servings: 4 (8 tacos)

Prep time: 45 minutes

Cook time: 33 minutes

Total time: 1 hour 18 minutes


4 large Swai or catfish fillets (about 1.5lbs. Total)

8 8-inch flour tortillas

3 shallots, unpeeled

3 hearts of romaine

olive oil cooking spray

1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen cherries, pitted

1 cup balsamic vinegar

juice from one lemon

4 to 5 wooden skewers


1/2 cup cilantro leaves

3 Tablespoons minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

1/2 teaspoon paprika

zest and juice from 1 lemon

1/2 Tablespoon lime juice

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


4 Tablespoons jarred roasted red bell pepper, chopped

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon finely minced fresh mint

1/2 cup or more softened butter at room temperature

salt and pepper to taste


1 (16 oz.) package pre-cooked polenta

dashes ground cayenne pepper

2 Tablespoons or more shredded Asiago cheese


Place all marinade ingredients into a food processor and pulse to create a paste. Place fish fillets into a dish long enough to lay fillets inside. Rub marinade over sides of fillets. Cover and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes; up to 2 hours. In a medium bowl add cherries, vinegar and lemon juice. Set aside on counter until time to grill. Soak skewers in water for at least 20 minutes.

Prepare gas grill and Spray a grilling basket with cooking spray. Spray scallions and romaine, coating all sides with olive oil cooking spray. Place scallions and romaine hearts and grilling basket onto grill grates on medium heat. Skewer cherries. Cook all for 25 to 30 minutes; Turning once or twice during cooking time, ensuring not to burn.

Slice polenta into 1/2” thick rounds and then slice each in half to form half-moon shapes. Spray both sides with oil. Place on grill; cover grill. Grill until polenta is golden brown, about 3 to 5 minutes per side, sprinkle with cheese before removing from heat.

Grill fish fillets for about 3 minutes per side over high heat. When fish turns opaque remove from grill.

Prepare Butter. Mix together butter ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.

Lay tortillas onto hot grill grates with burners off or on lowest setting. (Tortillas should be heated only and be able to fold into tacos without breaking.)

Cut the fish fillets in half and then length-wise. Tear off blackened outer leaves of romaine and discard. Cut off pieces of the lettuce. Pull apart grilled scallions.

Lay a tortilla onto a plate. Place a handful of grilled romaine leaves, fish sections, scallion and 5 to 8 cherries onto tortilla. Fold tortilla to form a taco and spoon teaspoons prepared butter into center. Repeat with remaining ingredients to create 2 tacos per plate and serve immediately with polenta on the side.

Roasted Red Pepper ButterPolenta Half-Moons


About amrecipes

My love of cooking has taken over. I was on the net one day and saw an ad for a recipe contest. I entered. Then, I entered another. Then another, and so on and when I won a contest... an entire year's worth of tomato products, I was hooked. Since then, I've entered many many different recipe contests. I have won a trip to New York, entries into cook-offs, a recipe published in a Kraft/Paula Deen cookbook and many food products and food related items. I enjoy cooking and entering recipe contests. I hope I spark an interest in others to create something they can be proud of. I'm always getting more ideas from the internet. Wow, I remember not having the internet years ago. It's a God send and I'm trying to cover every inch of the food sites!! Join me in my quest to keep fresh ideas flowing and creating new and exciting dishes.
This entry was posted in Catfish, Cheese, Contest, Fish, Seafood, Side Dish, Spanish/Mexican Cuisine, Tacos and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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