Lately, it has been too hot to use the oven. My small southern Californian town has been averaging a stinging 90 degrees for the past few weeks, and in response I’ve been looking for ways not to create more heat by frying veggies, or baking pastries. This installation of Mexicali vegetarian cooking focuses on a no-cook, non-bake recipe that will satisfy your starving, sun-baked mouth. Salsa is usually built on the base ingredient of tomatoes with supplementary chilies to add spice. Served at room-temperature or chilled, this staple of Mexican cuisine remains to be quite versatile as it can be revitalized with replacements or additions of fish, beans, or fruits.
This Pineapple-Mango salsa recipe gives that essential refreshing bite of chilled fruit during a humid 3pm, while still maintaing a natural spicy perkiness. There is no need to boil, fry, or bake with this recipe, as all that is needed are some of fruits, vegetables, and a refrigerator.
*While preparing this recipe, also know that other fruits would work as well, like watermelon to replace the mangoes, or lime juice to add more of a bite. When making quick salsa like this one, it is fun and easy to experiment with other fruits and juices.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time : 10 minutes
1 ripe pineapple
2 ripe mangoes
1 cucumber, peeled and diced
1 red bell pepper
1 large white onion
¼ cup of onion stalks
¼ cup of cilantro leaves
Peel and dice all the fruit and vegetables, save for the lemon, into tiny pieces. Add each ingredient into a bowl, mixing each new addition well.
Cut the lemon, and squeeze about ⅓ cup of juice into the salsa mix. Or, dice the lemon into small cubes, and it add to the salsa mix.
This week from his kitchen, Matt speaks of his love of all things fresh, even in the winter. A handful of fresh sea scallops never hurts of course.
As a kid, I was used to the orange tree from my grandmother’s backyard. Every winter, the tree nearly toppled from the weight of hundreds of oranges. The tree was more orange than green as the fruits outnumbered even the leaves on the tree, or so it seemed! My grandma invited us over to her house for the sole purpose of giving away bagfuls of large ripe oranges, the size of softballs. She couldn’t get rid of them fast enough, but I was happy to help. For me, there has never been anything quite like a fresh orange. It tastes of California, of childhood. It is a fruit best enjoyed fresh without any complication.
Returning from winter break, I always smuggle a couple of oranges in my carry-on back to New York. I’ve been stopped only once by an unfortunate TSA agent. “Excuse me sir. That would be considered a second carry-on.” In this instance, I had my dufflebag, a messenger bag, and a lunch bag full of oranges. I stopped him, “No! You won’t take my oranges!” I quickly redistributed my baggage, squeezing every orange into my dufflebag. I had to give one away to one lucky bystander. I gave the agent a satisfied look and walked to my gate.
However, a week after my return, my precious oranges always disappear. I am left longing for the juicy sweetness, and I know that I cannot taste it again until next year. Coming to my rescue is the timely arrival of the blood orange. I can still remember my first blood orange. Wandering around a Whole Foods on Houston, I spied a strange variety of fruit, an orange with splotchy red patches all over its peel. I picked it out for sheer curiosity, only to discover that I was able to retain that luscious California sunshine for a couple of weeks longer in defense from the New York cold. This year, it seems as if the cold has been scared away altogether.