Archived entries for salsa

Sweet and Hot: Mango-Tomatillo Salsa for Summer

I hesitated before posting this one, wondering how many salsa recipes one person really requires. Deborah Schneider’s salsa verde with tomatillos and avocado is worth its weight in gold, and I’m a big fan of Alton Brown’s simple tomato version, too. Before the weather got hot, I made one with black beans and oranges, too, but here we are, in June (June!) and those are not enough.

You need this sweet/hot mango salsa for piling on chips (a slick of guacamole underneath is encouraged) and spooning onto grilled chicken. You need it for cumin-rubbed pork chops and for hunks of halibut and skewers of marmalade-basted shrimp. I’d try it on chicken sausages, too, and tossed in a taco salad. It’s seriously good: refreshing, spicy and juicy; the perfect partner for a citrusy IPA or a light-bodied summer ale.

This summer is going to be a busy one for us–it seems like everyone we know is getting married, and Matt has to (start and) finish his dissertation before fall. I’m trying to remind myself that summer is a state of mind, and a big bowl of this salsa brings me right there. I’m looking forward to a few stolen moments of vacation: grilling and laughing while the sun sets on our balcony, bopping around beer festivals in Philly and on Governor’s Island, a lazy day at the beach when I can grab it. It’s better to not spend all summer concentrating on looking forward, anyway. I’d rather just savor it a little slower.

What recipes put you in a summer mood?

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Cusp-of-Spring Black Bean Chipotle Salsa

The day I’ve been waiting for has finally arrived–we ate our first outdoor meals this weekend. Local eggs scrambled with creme fraiche and scallions, big mugs of coffee and the newspaper in the morning, coconut-water lemonade and a giant bowl of chips with guacamole in the afternoon…every bite made me happy, and every minute of sun on my skin.

Of course, as much as I’m ready for warm weather dining, there isn’t actually much fresh produce yet, so I couldn’t make the homemade tomato salsa I perfected last summer. Instead, I riffed with what we had on hand–a bag of frozen corn, a can of black beans, a frozen canned chipotle pepper and some citrus to add a little sweetness and brightness.

You could pile this substantial salsa on carnitas or a hunk of fish, but we just ate scoops of it balanced on tortilla chips, filling our stomachs as we began the state-by-state India Pale Ale showdown (stay tuned on Serious Eats.) Sure, it was dark outside before we finished, but with enough sweatshirts and enough candles, it felt like summer was just waiting in the wings.

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