Sometimes These Things Just Write Themselves

Recipe:Cilantro-Chipotle Tilapia

We returned yesterday from a week with the entire family on Mission Beach in San Diego. Back in the real world, I’m always surprised and disappointed that none of the women at work, at the store, or on the street are wearing bikinis. After a while the surprise fades away, but the disappointment never really does.

It’s quite a challenge to find a rental place capable of holding 16 people (10 adults, 1 pre-teen, 4 kids, and a baby) that is also close to the beach. Kathleen is in charge of this and she did her usual fine job by finding this gem, 1 house back from the “boardwalk”.

It has three floors, two kitchens, 7 (I think) bedrooms, two decks, two grills, parking for three cars, a laundry room (with accompanying toilet!) and three bathrooms. Carving these rentals up into all these rooms often results in some interesting characteristics. This year’s most interesting characteristics were reserved for the bathrooms.

The second-floor bathroom had, in addition to a vanity and toilet, a combination hot-tub/shower feature that we christened ‘The Shub’.

A hot-tub is a nice touch for a beach house, although stuffing it into an inside bathroom is kind of sub-standard, and based on its size, this one is clearly meant to be single-person use. I think the “designer” realized it wasn’t going to really work as a hot-tub and then just stuck the shower fixture to the wall as an afterthought. But not until after adding the nice nautically-themed porthole.

It’s a little hard to judge scale from these pictures, so let me give you a feeling for how this works in real life. Suppose you are a normal-sized human male, say 6’2″. You have to stand in The Shub, because there is not enough room for your folded up legs, feet, and torso if you try and sit down. But that’s okay, the shower fixture is tall enough, although the porthole is a bit problematic. Here is the view out of the porthole.

See how close to the beach we are? Score!

The Shub, through the porthole, looks directly into the sliding glass door of our across-the-street neighbors. Isn’t that interesting? In an example of spectacularly bad (or spectacularly fiendish) design, that porthole is situated to perfectly frame a person’s um, package, if you will. So this photo might best be titled “A Package’s View from the Porthole”. If I were to encounter our neighbors on the beach and were to take my swimsuit off and place it over my head, thereby covering my face and exposing my self, their reaction would probably be:

Oh look, it’s our neighbor. Howdy neighbor!

Today’s recipe continues the nautical theme introduced by The Shub and its porthole by presenting a really tasty and easy way to prepare Tilapia.

It can’t get any easier or cheaper than this to cook fish for dinner. The ingredients above cost a total of $3.66. (disclaimer: I had leftover chipotle in adobo and rice) And easy? Here are the steps involved:

Chop the cilantro and chipotle.

Put all the sauce ingredients in the food processor.


Spread the sauce on the fillets and broil in the oven. (note: the heat of the resulting dish is directly proportional to the amount of sauce you put on the fillets. less sauce, less heat.)


I’m not all that happy with the picture. Perhaps I should have plated the meal on a lighter plate to highlight the Tilapia more. This stuff is seriously tasty, and will go well with many side dishes, salads, and starches.

Rating: We’ve had this twice and it’s been delicious each time. I give it 5 out of 5 robust beers (Negra Modelo goes well). It’s a hearty, spicy dish and deserves a hearty accompanying beverage.



This entry was posted in 5 Wine Glasses, Dinner, Seafood. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Sometimes These Things Just Write Themselves

  1. Jessica Donnerstein says:

    The Shub description had me laughing out loud in my office like a crazy lady. Thanks!

  2. Elizabeth says:

    Oh the shub. To Jonas (who showered in it twice), it was merely a portal he was pretty sure he could climb through and fall to his death if he really tried. To you it was so much more.

    I will totally try this tilapia for lunch! Maybe over tacos… Yum!

  3. Pingback: Guajillo Chile Shrimp and Pasta | Wine and a Spoon

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