This recipe serves 2 but you could easily scale it up to feed more.
A tostada is a tortilla that has been fried or baked until it is crisp. I’ve used it here as a base for a load of other really lovely things: a lime and garlic mayo, crunchy little gem lettuce, guacamole, a really fresh, zingy tomato salsa and salmon marinated in lime and smoky chipotle.
This is a great summer meal – ideal for when its too warm for hot food but you want something a bit more substantial than your average salad. It is also one of my husband’s favourite dinners!
Don’t be put off by all the different stages of the recipe: there are a few different elements required to put together this plate of deliciousness, but each one is simple and straightforward and can be prepared in advance if necessary.
You also doesn’t have to use salmon – you could use any firm fish here that will withstand being cut into chunks and marinated. Equally, you could use chicken, pork or prawns, the marinade would work just as well.
This recipe uses chipotles en adobo (I normally have a few homemade jars of this in the cupboard, but you can buy it at some supermarkets). You can find the recipe on this site. Because the chipotle is quite spicy, I haven’t used chilli in the guacamole or salsa, but you could add extra chilli if you wanted to.
- 2 salmon fillets
- 4 limes
- 1 tbsp chipotles en adobo
- Olive oil
- 2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes
- 1 banana shallot
- Bunch of fresh coriander
- 1/2 tsp dark brown sugar
- 1 avocado
- 3 tbsp mayonnaise
- 1/3 clove garlic
- 2 baby gem lettuce, washed, dried and roughly shredded
- 2 corn tortillas
For the salmon:
Mix together the juice of 1/2 lime, 1 tbsp of chipotles en adobo and 1 tsp of olive oil. Cut the salmon fillets into finger-width chunks and add to the marinade. Leave to marinade for a minimum of 30 minutes whilst you prepare the rest of the dish.
For the salsa:
Quarter the cherry tomatoes and put in a small mixing bowl. I used some fancy yellow and red ones here but use whatever you like. If I’m making salsa with normal tomatoes I tend to de-seed them otherwise it makes the salsa too watery, but I don’t think it is necessary here. Finely dice the banana shallot and add to the bowl with a handful of chopped coriander, 1 tbsp of olive oil, the juice of 1 lime, a large pinch of salt and 1/2 tsp of dark brown sugar. Again, you may want to adjust the lime and salt to suit your own taste.
For the guacamole:
Scoop out the avocado flesh and squeeze the juice of 1 lime over the top. Mash with a fork until it is a consistency that you like (I keep mine quite chunky) and add salt and chopped coriander to taste. You may need to adjust the amount of lime juice too, depending on how juicy your lime is and how you like it! Cover and keep to one side in the fridge.
For the lime and garlic mayo:
Don’t skip this bit! I think it makes the dish. Put 3 tbsp of mayonnaise in a small bowl and grate in 1/3 of a clove of garlic using a very fine grater. A little raw garlic goes a very long way, so be careful – you might want to use less if you aren’t a big garlic lover. Stir in the juice and zest of 1 lime and add salt to taste. It is meant to have quite a kick as you will only have a thin smear of it over the top of your tostada.
Once the salmon has had its 30 minutes marinating, tip the fish and marinade into an oven proof dish and bake in a pre-heated oven at 200 degrees Celsius for 10 minutes.
Rub the corn tortillas with a little oil and put them in the oven – I usually place them directly onto the bars of the oven shelf, but you can use a baking tray if you want. Check them after 2 minutes: you are looking for them to go golden brown but not burn. If they haven’t reached that stage after 2 minutes, keep checking every minute. They are easy to burn so you need to keep an eye on them. Once they are golden brown, remove from the oven using tongs and pop them onto a cooling rack. They won’t be crispy straight out of the oven, but will crisp up as they cool.
After the fish has had 10 minutes, check that the it is cooked through (return to the oven for a couple more minutes if it needs longer) and set it aside to cool slightly. I like to serve the fish warm rather than piping hot, given that it is being served on top of a mound of salad.
You are now ready to assemble the dish! Put each crispy tortilla on a plate and spread a dollop of the garlic lime mayo over it. Top with a large handful of the shredded lettuce, then top the lettuce with a generous portion of guacamole. Arrange half the salmon on top of the guacamole on each tostada and drizzle any remaining marinade juices over the top. Scatter the tomato salsa over the top of everything (this will dress the salad) and serve with a wedge of lime and a little chopped coriander over the top. Enjoy with a cold beer.