Nectarines are a fuzz-free subspecies of peaches, fruit with denser flesh and alluring fragrance. The white varieties have a high degree of sweetness, while the yellow-fleshed varieties have a bright, pleasing edge of tartness.
This nectarine-based salsa is delectable atop pork, chicken, or fish, as well as grilled tofu or roasted asparagus. It is also scrumptious served with brown rice or other cooked grains, such as farro. Or use it as a dip with crisp pita chips.
Nectarine, Mango and Black Bean Salsa
Yield: 6 servings
1 ripe, yellow-fleshed nectarine, pitted, diced
1 mango, pitted, diced
1 medium-sized jalapeño chili, seeded, veined removed, minced, see cook’s notes
1/2 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, diced
1/2 hothouse cucumber, peeled if desired, diced
1 cup canned black beans, drained in sieve, rinsed with cold water
Juice of 2 limes
3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
Coarse salt (kosher or sea) to taste
Cook’s notes: Use caution when working with fresh chiles. Upon completion, wash hands and work area thoroughly; do NOT touch eyes or face. If you want a salsa with a higher degree of spicy heat, use a serrano chili instead of a jalapeno.
1. In nonreactive bowl, such as glass or ceramic, combine all ingredients. Gently toss with a rubber or silicon spatula. Allow to rest 30 minutes at room temperature. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Spoon over grilled chicken, fish, pork, cooked grains such as rice or farro, or tofu. Or serve with toasted pita chips to use as dippers.
Source: “50 Best Plants on the Planet” by Cathy Thomas (Chronicle, $29.95)
Have a cooking question? Contact Cathy Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org