Let the Sunshine In

By / Food / March 8th, 2010 / 1

I love this time of year with its promise of warm weather. It really doesn’t matter what Mother Nature throws at us now — blizzards or freezing rain  — we know that spring is just around the corner.

I just have one problem, though. This is a really hard time of year to find local, fresh produce. Here in Ontario, at least, the majority of fruits and vegetables come from Chile, South Africa and other points far away. Really, who knows when the produce was picked? By the time we get it, the fruit may look ripe, but taste bland (and have little in the way of nutrients). My biggest issue, though, is that I don’t completely trust the growing methods used in some parts of the world. What chemicals are sprayed onto them? Are the farmers treated fairly for their efforts? The short answer to this problem might be to restrict my choices to organic and fair trade products. But, have you seen the cost of that stuff lately? Unfortunately, reality dictates that most of my groceries have to come from standard sources.

So, I got a nice surprise at Fortino’s the other day. I guess because of the devastating frost in Florida, they’ve received a lot of tangerines from Italy. Yes, that’s certainly further away than Mexico, but I must admit to a bias toward all things Italian. I picked up a whole bunch of them, and they were absolutely scrumptious — sweet and juicy. Here’s the recipe I made using them.

Spicy Citrus Shrimp Tacos

Serves 4
Recipe adapted from a recipe on a Sunkist flyer I found at Fortinos.

1 lime, zested and juiced
1 lb. shrimp, peeled
1 tsp olive oil

1/4 cup orange juice (or clementine juice)
2 cups shredded cabbage
1/2 cup mayonnaise (The original recipe calls for sour cream.)
2 Tbsp cilantro, chopped (I used parsley.)
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)

2 clementines, peeled and segmented
1 avocado, diced
1/2 cup tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup corn
1/2 cup canned black beans (optional)
1/2 cup diced red pepper

10 small, soft corn tortillas

1. In a large bowl, combine shrimp and lime zest and juice. Set aside while preparing the salsa.
2. For the salsa, combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
3. For the coleslaw, mix the mayonnaise, orange juice, parsley, garlic and cayenne. Add cabbage and stir until combined. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. Season shrimp with salt and pepper. In a small sauté pan, heat oil over medium high heat. Add shrimp and cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until shrimp are opaque and cooked through. Remove from heat.
5. To assemble tacos, spoon 2 Tbsp of coleslaw down the middle of the tortilla. Add 3 Tbsp of salsa and top with 3 shrimp. Roll up tortilla and repeat with remaining ingredients.


Rosemary Mantini has always loved words. When she isn't working as the Associate Editor at Tidings Magazine, she's helping others achieve their writing dreams, and sometimes she even relaxes with a good book and a glass of wine.

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