When temperatures soar and you’re melting into a puddle, chilled dishes don’t just sound good – they’re essential for summer survival.
When cooking for my clients in hot weather, I often prepare this refreshing pineapple mango salsa: lots of bright flavors and no cooking required. It’s a cooling addition to grilled chicken, fish, shrimp, or pork. Serve it alongside a sandwich or a simple cheese quesadilla. Bring a taste of the tropics to your table today.
To make this salsa cut up fresh pineapple and mango for the best results. You can purchase packages of pre-cut fruit at many better grocers, but do it yourself for the best results (and good knife skills practice too).
I’ve cut up case after case of fresh pineapple for catered events. So much that when I get home my husband tells me I smell like a pineapple. If you’ve never tackled cutting up a fresh pineapple, here’s how I do it.
With a sharp knife, cut off the top and bottom. Sit the pineapple flat on the cutting board. Cut through the pineapple vertically cutting it in half. Cut each half lengthwise into quarters. Turn the wedge on it’s side and trim off the tough core. You’ll have eight long wedges. Half you’ll use for the salsa. Save the other half for another use. After the rind is off, I’ll freeze it for breakfast smoothies.
To remove the prickly rind I use a thin, flexible slicing knife. With the wedge sitting flat, take your and slice parallel to the rind freeing the fruit. Dice each strip into small pieces for the salsa.
For the mango, peel with a sharp vegetable peeler and trim off the bottom. Sit it flat on a cutting board. Starting with the wider side, cut the flesh from the large center pit. Cut extra flesh from the sides. Dice into small pieces for the salsa, about the same size as the pineapple pieces.
Once the pineapple and mango are ready, combine in a bowl with red onion, chives, peppers and lime juice. Toss together, cover, and place in the refrigerator. Chill for 30 minutes or longer. A cooling summer salsa is ready to serve.
Pineapple Mango Salsa: A Taste of the Tropics
Yield: about 3 ½-4 cups
½ of a fresh golden pineapple, flesh cut from rind and cubed small
1 mango, peeled and cubed small
¼ to ½ small red onion, finely diced
1 tablespoon chives
½ red bell pepper, diced small
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced fine
2 limes, juiced
Cilantro or mint leaves, washed, dried and chopped fine, to taste
Pinch of salt
1) Cut the top and bottom off of the pineapple. Set it on its bottom end and cut in half vertically top to bottom. Save the other half for another use. Cut the half into long quarter wedges. Lay a wedge flat on its side and trim off the tough center core. Next, stand wedge on the rind side and slide knife close to the rind cutting away the sweet flesh and missing and brown spots. Cut the long strips again into several long thin slices and dice small. Place in a bowl.
2) Peel the mango with a sharp vegetable peeler. Cut flesh from the large oval center. Dice small and add to the pineapple.
3) Add the onion, chives and peppers to the bowl. Gently toss salsa and add lime juice, herbs and salt. Taste for flavor and make any personal adjustments preferred.
Other links you might enjoy:
Grilled Lemon Mint Chicken, from A Food Centric Life (great with this salsa)
Peach salsa recipe from Simply Recipes
Seared Scallops with Mango-Melon Salsa from Steamy Kitchen
All about pineapple from About.com
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