I’m embarrassed to admit it, but I used to practice salsa discrimination. It was only butch salsas for me — tomato, onion, lime, cilantro. Maybe a little corn or black beans if I was feeling frisky. But that’s it. I was a berry bigot: no fruit allowed in my salsa.
And then one day last year, I had my first fruit salsa experience, and it changed my culinary life. It has taken some confidence, but I’m finally ready to come out of the pantry and show my fruity salsa pride. 😉
I think what kept me away from fruity salsas was the idea of it tipping the savory balance of my meal. I’m a salt guy…and not a huge fan of sweets. But this salsa skirts the threat of sugar overload with a nice balance of heat from the jalapeño and acid from the lime. And of course my beloved cilantro adds a nice kick. Here’s what you need and how I did it.
Watermelon Mango Salsa
-1 cup of watermelon, diced
-1 ripe mango, diced
-1/8 cup red onion, tiny diced
-1 TBSP fresh jalapeño, diced
-juice of one lime
-splash of red wine vinegar
-salt and pepper
First, dice your melon and get it into the bowl. Here’s a tip: Cut atop a paper towel to catch all that sticky juice.
Next, take care of your onion, jalapeño, and cilantro. Dice these super fine so you don’t end up with fiery onion-mouth. Tip: Reserve a little of each to add at the end — these are accent flavors and can easily steal the show.
Now, the mango. This fruit is a bitch. Mangoes have this odd, irregularly shaped pit. Unlike an avocado, it’s never really in the same place, so breaking down a mango is a frustrating mess. Technically, you’re supposed to cut off the “cheeks” of the mango, then make cross-hatch slices then scoop out the cubes. Sounds crazy? It is. Watch how many times I almost cut my fingers!
Speaking of gay salsa…can you get any gayer than a video featuring cutting a mango to the tunes of Lady GaGa? LOL…I “shot” this with Droid, and David added some tunes on top. Thanks, Baby! Aren’t we “faincy” now! (Let me know if you can’t view the video…it’s been giving me fits this morning.) This mango actually cooperated…some are easier than others. All I can say is good luck.
Finish by adding your lime juice and vinegar. If your fruit isn’t really ripe and sweet, add a squirt of honey to balance the flavors. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Here’s the final tip…don’t eat this with chips. I mean, you can, but it’s best with something smoky from the grill. I did a quick marinade for chicken with cumin, chili powder, garlic, red wine vinegar, and lime. I served it with salad and grilled corn. Sort of. We actually ate it with baked sweet potatoes, but they looked nasty on camera so I got out some leftover grilled corn and took the picture with that instead. Ha! Behind the scenes with Kitchen Mischief! 😉
Guess what? Matthew and I have a sushi-making date on Thursday. Watch out, kids! Maybe we’ll even do some video! See you soon!