Tuesday, July 28, 2009

cantaloupe salsa

cantaloupe salsa

I wish I could tell you that I’m putting my time into more exciting things* but fact is, it’s nothing but boring stuff keeping me out of the kitchen this week: a new oven that needed installing, pipe work shutting off the water in our apartment today, more doctors appointments than any healthy person should ever require, long classes to teach us the proper diapering of a tiny baby butt, and the kind of steamy heat outside that would make it absurd to turn on the oven anyway (though I should, you know, confirm that it works, right?). Banal, right?

cantaloupe cubes

But as usual, this has not kept me from bringing home gobs of produce each week. I can’t help it: everything is just too pretty and tasty. Fortunately, you don’t actually have to cook peak-summer produce to make it taste good. Heck, the hardest thing is not eating it straight even after you’ve set your mind to rendering it into something else.

salsa ingredients

Mango salsa is nothing new, heck, I’d say two years ago when everyone in the world seemed to simultaneously discover it, you could barely find a quesadilla that didn’t come with a little pile of it on the side. But in these non-tropical parts, I have yet to find a mango at my local markets, but they’re rolling in melons right now. I’ve long suspected they’d make a great swap with mangoes — I like the idea of pairing them with something bolder, like proscuitto, ham or even just straight salting them, as a lot of the world does — and my hunch was duly rewarded this afternoon. Bonus points: It required no cooking, heating up the apartment, running water or frankly any great effort to throw together. Everything should be this easy when you’re eight million months pregnant.

cantaloupe salsa

* Actually, we did get back to the North Fork this weekend, thanks to generous friends with lovely homes, and it was wonderfully relaxing despite the fact that wineries can be cruel teases of places for the temporarily booze-free. But wow, is our wine rack well-stocked for One Day in September. All that’s left is to choose which one to pop open in the recovery room!

paumanokblackberries, flysoon!baydoes not like to sharelenz winery

One year ago: Herbed Summer Squash and Potato Torte, Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti and Garlic-Glazed Mustard Skewers
Two years ago: Zucchini Bread

Cantaloupe Salsa
Adapted from Gourmet

Makes about 2 cups of salsa

This would be great over grilled fish or chicken, not that ours ever got that far. It is equally good with tortilla chips.

It occured to me after the fact that this would be fun with a mix of honeydew and cantaloupe, for color and a bigger range of flavors.

2 cups diced (1/4 inch) cantaloupe (from a 2 1/4-lb piece)
1/4 cup diced (1/4 inch) sweet onion (such as Vidalia) or red onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or cilantro
1 (2-inch-long) fresh hot red or green chile (skip the seeds if you want to dim the heat), minced
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt

Mix everything and eat immediately.


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