Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Pan-Seared Jicama, Peppers, and Corn

Recipe updated July 2017

Side dishes are some of the most fun creations to play around with, especially if you include an ingredient that’s new to you. I’ve never met a vegetable I didn’t like, so I always enjoy picking up something “different” and preparing it in a simple way that brings out the best of its natural flavor.

“Different,” of course, is relative. One cook’s exotic find is another cook’s staple. The jicama (HEE-ka-ma), for example, is everyday food throughout Latin America, but not so much in other parts of the world. It’s a root vegetable from South America that looks something like a big, tan turnip, but the flavor is actually sweet, especially in smaller ones. Some supermarket jicamas weigh 4-5 pounds, but opt for 1-1/2 to 2 pounds if you can find one.

You can cook jicama in the same way you cook potatoes (they look very similar in the pan), but the texture of the jicama will remain much firmer—think crispy apple—even when cooked. Jicamas also are eaten raw in salads or tossed in a stir-fry for a little crunchy addition.

Peeled Jicama
This recipe is a simple vegetable sauté that allows each ingredient to bring its own flavor—and color—to the dish. Ready in about minutes.

Serves 4

  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 1 small jicama, peeled and diced (about 2-1/2 cups)
  • 1 jalapeno chile, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
  • 1 cup sweet corn kernels (thawed, if frozen)
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped red bell pepper
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • chopped cilantro, for garnish
Diced Jicama
  1. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, swirling to coat. Add the jicama, spreading to a single layer, and cook, stirring a few times, until beginning to brown, 9-10 minutes.
  2. Add the jalapeno, corn, and bell pepper and season with salt and pepper (drizzle with a little more oil if the skillet is too dry). Sauté until all the vegetables are crisp-tender, 3-4 minutes.

Beginning to Cook

Browned Jicama

Jalapeno Mixture Added
Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and serve right away.

Pan-Seared Jicama, Peppers, and Corn 

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