Pickle & Preserve

Crab & Cantaloupe Tacos with Pickled Jicama “Tortillas”

Photo by Bobbi Lin
Author Notes

I've tucked a light and refreshing crab and cantaloupe salad into a quick pickled jicama slice and called it a taco. —Sippity Sup (Greg Henry)

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: Sippity Sup (Greg Henry) is a cookbook author and podcast host who lives in Los Angeles.
WHAT: A briny, summery play on the taco—with pickled jicama instead of tortillas.
HOW: Pickle jicama slices in a turmeric brine, then make a salad of crab and cantaloupe, which play surprisingly well together—especially when doused with fresh lime juice.
WHY WE LOVE IT: Crispy jicama pickles take the place of standard tortillas (we found that a brine time of 3 hours was just right). Fill 'em with a sweet, tender crab and cantaloupe salad and you've got a light summer dinner perfect for a hot night. —maryGpastorek

  • Makes 16
  • 1 jicama (at least 4" in diameter)
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 pound lump crab meat
  • 1/2 cup tiny diced cantaloupe
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced green onion
  • 3 teaspoons thinly sliced fresh mint leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon pico de gallo powder (plus more for sprinkling)
  • 16 whole fresh mint leaves (as garnish)
  • 16 lime wedges (for spritzing)
In This Recipe
  1. Make the jicama “tortillas”: Halve the jicama and make 16 very thin center cut slices (about 5 mm thick). A mandoline is very helpful for getting thin, uniform slices. Use a 3 1/2″ round cutter to cut each of the slices into uniformly sized rounds. Place the rounds in a shallow, heatproof bowl. Set aside.
  2. In a small saucepan, stir the apple cider vinegar, water, salt, sugar, and turmeric until the salt and sugar dissolve. Place the pan over high heat and bring the brine to a boil.
  3. Pour the brine over the jicama slices, making sure some liquid gets between all the slices. Set aside to come to room temperature.
  4. Make the crab salad: Place the crab meat, diced melon, rice vinegar, thinly sliced green onion, thinly sliced mint, and 1/2 teaspoon pico de gallo powder in a medium bowl. Gently fold the mixture together until well incorporated, taking care to keep the lump crab meat from breaking up too much.
  5. Make the tacos: Drain the pickled jicama slices and gently pat them dry with paper towels. Lay the slices onto a serving platter and divide the crab salad equally between each of the slices. Garnish the tacos with a sprinkle of pico de gallo powder and a mint leaf. Serve with lime wedges on the side.
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