Fresh and juicy summer fruit is for more than just fruit salads or an afternoon snack. Preparing fresh summer fruit salsas to pair with grilled meat and fish dishes will make for light and tasty summer meals.
Fruit Salsa Tips
Choose ripe fruit: Just about any fruit from pineapple to mangoes to cherries can be used in a fruit salsa, just be sure pick fruits that are ripe. The sweetness and the texture of the fruit heavily impact the sweetness and texture of the salsa so choosing perfectly ripe fruit is important.
Combine a few fruits: You don’t have to stick to just one fruit in the salsa. You can combine as many as you like, just be sure they all taste good together- as a general rule though up to three fruits usually balance well.
Balance is key: The balance of sweetness, acidity, and maybe spiciness is what makes fruit salsa so great, otherwise it would just be fruit salad. You want to always add a bit of citrus, like lime juice, lemon juice, or even orange juice to cut the sweetness of the fruit a little. You don’t want overly sweet fruit topping a delectable piece of grilled meat. Adding some spiciness like minced jalapeno or habanero peppers will also balance out the sweetness, just be sure not to add too much heat or that’s all you will taste.
Herbs keep it fresh: Adding fresh minced herbs like mint, rosemary, or cilantro will always add a bit of freshness to a salsa. When using herbs in a salsa, be sure to always use fresh, dried can add an undesirable texture and taste. Again, be careful with the balance of the herbs so you are not tasting only cilantro.
Add some crunch: If you want a bit more texture mixing chopped nuts into the salsa is a great addition. Almonds, macadamia nuts, or pine nuts make delicious counterparts to a fresh salsa and will add some crunch to your meal. Nuts also pair well with many meats and fish so think about what nuts work with your entrée. For example, macadamia nut crusted mahi mahi is a popular dish to take a creative spin and put the nuts in the salsa instead of on the fish.
Pineapple Macadamia Salsa
Makes 4 cups
- 4 plum tomatoes, seed and diced
- 1/2 fresh chile serrano, diced
- 2 green onions, chopped finely
- 2 tablespoons mint leaves, chopped
- 1 tablespoon basil leaves, chopped
- juice of 1 key lime
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 ounces macadamia nuts, chopped coarsely
- 1 ripe pineapple, peeled and diced
- 1 pinch granulated sugar
- Cayenne pepper to taste
- Combine tomatoes with chile serrano, green onions, mint, and basil.
- In a separate bowl whisk lime juice with olive oil and drizzle over tomato mixture. Add macadamia nuts and pineapple then season with sugar and cayenne pepper. Stir well, but gently so you don’t break up fruit.
Makes 2 cups
- 6 ripe kiwifruit, peeled and chopped
- 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1 avocado, peeled and chopped
- 1/2 seedless cucumber, peeled and diced
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh habanero pepper
- 1 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Combine kiwi, pomegranate seeds, avocado, cucumber, and habanero in a medium bowl
- Whisk olive oil with lime juice and cilantro. Drizzle dressing over salsa and season to taste with salt and pepper. Gently stir to mix well
Watermelon and Tomato Salsa
Makes 4 cups
- 2 cups seeded watermelon, diced
- 2 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
- 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- Sea salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon fresh mint, minced
- Combine watermelon with tomatoes, scallions, and pepper
- Drizzle vinegar over mixture then season with salt and top with mint