Dragon Fruit Is The Unexpected Pairing Your Fish Needs

Citrus might be one of the most common types of fruit to pair with seafood, but it isn't the only way to complement the catch-of-the-day. Rather than limit yourself to lemons, limes, and oranges, why not take a more tropical approach when deciding which fruit to match with your filets? To give fish recipes a makeover, consider introducing fresh dragon fruit into the mix.

Dragon fruit tends to have a mild and mellow flavor profile that imparts another dimension of depth without detracting from the protein. This makes it a fabulous companion to equally delicate white fish like cod or mahi mahi. Additionally, because the fruit does have a sweet edge (especially true of yellow-skinned varieties), it can balance the savoriness and saltiness of offerings such as salmon or mackerel. Since dragon fruit recalls flavors of refreshingly crisp kiwi and juicy pear coupled with a hint of citrus-like acidity, it even works to cut through the richness of fattier fish like tuna.

Aside from flavor enhancement, pairing dragon fruit with fish also makes sense from a textural standpoint. Essentially, dragon fruit complements both firm and flaky filets alike thanks to its crunchy yet creamy nature. What's more, both the white and red-fleshed versions of the tropical produce add massively to a dish's visual appeal.

How to pair dragon fruit and fish like a pro

There are endless ways to pair dragon fruit with fish. You can cut the fruit into cubes and add them into a loaded sushi roll or tropical-inspired snapper ceviche. Similarly, pieces of fresh dragon fruit can be used to top a smoked salmon carpaccio or sea bass crudo. Otherwise, you can craft a salad or slaw to serve with crispy fried filets. Better yet, make a fruit-forward salsa featuring dragon fruit to garnish citrusy blackened fish tacos.

Moreover, the juicy fruit can be transformed into some sort of sauce that's suitable for accompanying filets prepared in a frill-free way. For example, dragon fruit can be cooked down into a bright coulis that's perfect to spoon over seared filets of haddock. Likewise, filets of delicately poached tilapia or roasted salmon benefit from a dollop of sweet dragon fruit compote. Even grilled swordfish steaks can be upgraded when brushed with a glaze of dragon fruit and spicy chilis.

Because dragon fruit boasts such an eye-catching exterior, the peel can be repurposed to maximize the produce to its fullest. After slicing it in two and carefully scooping out the flesh, a hollowed half can be used as the serving vessel for poke or a seafood salad. That said, whether it's used as a garnish or as the focal point of a recipe, dragon fruit is a must when preparing fish!