This Moroccan Mahi Mahi recipe is a tribute to my love for Moroccan flavored food. Several years ago I traveled to Morocco twice, and both times I seriously considered staying there because the food was so exotic, warming, spicy, sweet, but still in some ways so simple. I was lucky enough to have a few private cooking lessons with a chef in Azrou a small town South of Fes. This Mahimahi recipe below is my own creation inspired by my time there. It is relatively quick way to make an exotic dinner.
Mahimahi (Mahi-mahi, Mahi Mahi) is the Hawaiian name for Coryphaena hippurus, and has become the name for this fish throughout the US. It is also known as dorado or dolphin fish and it is found in tropical and temperate waters in the Atlantic, Indian, Pacific Oceans and the Mediterranean; thus, they also swim in Moroccan waters. They are usually 8-25 pounds.
It is obvious that Mahi Mahi is best eaten fresh, frozen filets are nothing in comparison. This fish is somewhat seasonal as mahimahi catches in Hawaii peak during the months of March-May and September-November. It has thin skin and pink flesh that changes to white when cooked. The texture is firm, and it has mild and sweet flavor.
More information about Mahimahi and other Hawaiian fish can be found at Hawaii-seafood.org http://hawaii-seafood.org/uploads/species%20pdfs/9-Hawaii%20Mahimahi.pdf & on the http://www.iucnredlist.org
Moroccan Mahi Mahi Recipe
Ingredients for the fish
- 3/4 to 1 pound Mahi
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 piece inch ginger chopped fine or grated
- 1/8 tsp cloves
- 1/4 tsp cardamon
- 1/4 tsp coriander
- 1/8 tsp allspice
- 2 tbs olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 medium tomato chopped roughly
- 1/4 cup organic white flour
Ingredients for Moroccan quinoa
- 1 cup of quinoa (or half quinoa, half rice or millet, or couscous if you want to be traditional)
- The juice of ½ of a fresh orange
- 2 cups water or broth
- Small handful of raisins
- 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
- 2 carrots chopped
- 2 celery stalks chopped
- 1/2 onion chopped
Steps for the fish:
- Prepare spices mixing them together (except ginger).
- Wash the fish and pat it dry, cut out liver and make sure there are no bones. Then, cut the filets into large cube size pieces.
- Place flour (put a few dashes of salt in the flour) on a plate and cover pieces of fish in flour.
- Now, toast the spices and fresh ginger in a non-stick pan for a few minutes until aromatic.
- Add the chopped onion and 1 tablespoon olive oil and sauté on low until translucent.
- If making the quinoa, start this now and let the onions cook on low (sort of like you are caramelizing them).
- Steps for the quinoa, bring water to boil, place all ingredients in a pot and bring to boil again. Turn to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and leave top on until ready to serve.
- When you are ready to start the fish, turn up the heat to medium-high and add another tablespoon of oil and the chopped tomato.
- Next, place the fish in the pan and fry/sauté on medium or medium high until done (about 7-10 minutes).
- In the end, the result should be fish that is somewhat firm and completely cooked inside but still moist. There will be a saucy, Moroccan spiced tomato mixture that surrounds each piece.
- Add more salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve garnished with chopped fresh mint.