Jicama is a crispy, sweet, edible root that resembles a turnip in physical appearance, although the plants are not related.
Jicama is very popular in Mexican cuisine and has been cultivated in South America for centuries. Jicama has a very unique flavor, and for this reason, it lends itself very well to salads, salsas, and vegetable platters.
The Jicama root can sometimes grow very large. I recommend not picking large jicama's. If they exceed the size of two fists, they begin to convert the sugars that give jicama its sweet flavor into starches, making the root somewhat woody to the taste.
Jicama is actually a legume, and it grows on vines that may reach 20 feet (six meters) in length. The vines tend to hug the ground, terminating in tubers that may grow up to 50 pounds (22 kilograms) in size, although the majority of jicama roots sent to market are approximately three to four pounds (1.3-2 kilograms) in weight. Before eating, the coarse brown outer layer of the jicama should be peeled to reveal the white inside.
When choosing jicama, I recommend looking for medium sized, firm tubers with dry roots. Do not purchase jicama that has wet or soft spots, which may indicate rot, and don't be drawn to overlarge examples of the tuber, because they may not be as flavorful. Jicama keeps very well in your refrigeration for up to two weeks.
1 c. corn
1/2 c. diced red onion
1 c. peeled, chopped jicama
1/2 c. diced red bell pepper
1 c. fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped
1 lime, zested and juiced
2 Tbsp. sour cream
2 Tbsp. cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
2 Tbsp. salt
6 (4 oz.) fillets Tilapia
2 Tbsp. olive oil
12 corn tortillas, warmed
- Preheat grill for high heat.
- In a medium bowl, mix together corn, red onion, jicama, red bell pepper, and cilantro. Stir in lime juice and zest.
- In a small bowl, combine cayenne pepper, ground black pepper, and salt. Brush each fillet with olive oil, and sprinkle with spices.
- Arrange fillets on grill grate, and cook for 3 minutes per side. For each fiery fish taco, top two corn tortillas with fish, sour cream, and corn salsa.