White Fish Poached in Coconut Milk with Mango

Jake at El Pescador helped us choose halibut.

When Alex visited San Diego, we went out to a Mexican restaurant in Ocean Beach for dinner and agreed that our meal was the very best Mexican food we had ever tasted.  Visit Ranchos Cocina if you are ever in OB!  The Acapulco fish special inspired me to create this recipe, which I prepared over and over again with many types of white fish.

Our favorite versions of this dish were made with frozen, local mahi-mahi and fresh halibut.  My sister, Liz, and I ventured to El Pescador in nearby La Jolla to buy the local, line-caught halibut at the fish market.  I cooked the halibut for Liz and her husband, Jay, while their new puppy, Gracie, stood watch for crumbs.


White Fish Poached in Coconut Milk with Mango – serves 3 to 4

When preparing your mango, be sure to remove all of the skin from the chunks.  The skin tastes bitter, and can sometimes irritate your skin.  I prefer using full-fat coconut milk for this dish.  The fat will separate from liquids in the can, and you can decide how much fat to include.  I usually use about half a cup of the fat and dispose of the rest.  You will get a creamier sauce and fuller flavor if you use full-fat rather than lite coconut milk.  I have tried this recipe with bass, cod, mahi-mahi and halibut.  Cod soaks up the coconut milk flavors the most, and cooks more quickly than other white fish because it is so thin.

You will need: IMG_1792.jpg

  1. 2 broccoli crowns, chopped
  2. 1 ripe mango, chopped into chunks
  3. 1 C quinoa
  4. 32 oz vegetable broth
  5. 14.5 oz C coconut milk
  6. 1-1.5 lb white fish
  7. 1 t garlic powder
  8. 1 t black pepper



  1. Wash and chop broccoli.  Chop mango into chunks, being careful to remove the skin from all pieces.  Set broccoli and mango aside, separately.
  2. Rinse quinoa and combine with 1 C veggie broth and 1 C water in a medium sauce pan.  Bring to a boil.  When quinoa reaches a boil, turn heat to low and simmer, covered, for about 15 minutes.
  3. Steam broccoli in a separate pot.
  4. Meanwhile, combine canned coconut milk and about 1.5 C vegetable broth in a large pot over medium-high heat.  Stir until coconut milk fat has melted, and then add mango chunks.  Bring mixture to a boil and then reduce heat to low and simmer.  Drop in your fish filets and cook for about 5 minutes, adding 1-2 minutes if your filets are thick.
  5. At this point, your quinoa should be about ready.  Stir to check whether the liquids have been completely absorbed.  If they have, remove from heat and let the quinoa sit, covered, for 5 minutes.
  6. Check that the broccoli has reached desired tenderness, and season with garlic powder and black pepper.
  7. Fluff quinoa with a fork before serving.  Serve fish over 1 C cooked quinoa, spooning sauce and mango chunks across the fish.  Enjoy with a side of broccoli.

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