"I may still stutter in calling this a real salsa, but I can't deny the deliciousness any longer."
I've been living my life by a simple salsa equation: tomatoes/tomatillos + chilies + herbs/seasonings/onions = salsa. Not a lot to it, but the possibilities are almost endless. Any wavering from this I will almost certainty dismiss as a bastardization. None of those mango-peach-fruit-filled "salsas" that seem to be multiplying each time I enter the grocery store, no sir.
Just don't turn your back, because in that one moment I may have a tryst with say—a pineapple salsa.
My wife likes the fruit salsas, and even though I haven't partaken in their construction, I think there's some ancient law somewhere that clearly states you can't turn down something the better half serves—and I'll grudgingly admit it: They're quite tasty. Putting my stubborn ways aside, I took some lessons learned about what makes these good and went forth creating my own monstrosity.
Like my original salsa equation, simplicity is key. I started with a bunch of fruits that only improve with grilling: pineapple, red bell pepper, and a jalapeño. After taken to the flames, they were diced and thrown in with some red onion, cilantro, and lime juice. A quick seasoning, and the salsa was gone almost the second it came together. It was just two of us eating, but it was addictive—a tender, juicy sweetness was cut with a little spice and crunch for a salsa that was finished off with a spoon once we were sadly left chip-less.
I may still stutter in calling this a real salsa, but I can't deny the deliciousness any longer, and might even share this come Cinco de Mayo. I have come out of the fruit-salsa closet.
Grilled Pineapple Salsa
- 1 large pineapple, skinned, cored, and cut into 1-inch rounds
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 medium jalapeño
- 1 small red onion, finely diced
- 1/2 cup loosely-packed, finely chopped cilantro
- 2 small limes, juiced
- Kosher salt
Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all the charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and spread the coals evenly over the charcoal grate. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Place the pineapple slices, bell pepper, and jalapeño on the grill.
Cook the pineapple until lightly browned on both sides, about 2 to 4 minutes per side. Remove from the grill, chop medium, and place in a medium sized bowl.
Cook the peppers until completely charred all over. Remove from the grill to a paper or Ziploc bag and seal. When the peppers are cool enough to handle, about 5 minutes, remove their skins and chop the red pepper medium and the jalapeño finely. Add to the bowl with the pineapple.
Add the onion, cilantro, and lime juice to bowl and toss until well combined. Season with salt to taste and serve.