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Katherine's Spicy Fresh Watermelon Salsa

Salsa is traditionally made with tomatoes, onions, hot pepper, cilantro, lime juice and salt. But I like to add seasonal fruits and vegetables to keep it interesting. In the spring, I add strawberries, in the summer, it's watermelon, which is especially sweet this year. You could even add celery, carrots, greens, mangos - really, anything goes. In the winter, use canned Italian plum tomatoes.excerpted from "Diet Simple Farm to Table Recipes: 50 New Reasons to Cook in Season."

I usually use vine-ripe tomatoes for my fresh salsa, excerpted from my book, Diet Simple. But watermelon is a surprising and exotically delicious substitute for all the tomatoes, or just half of them - as in this version. Serve this salsa with grilled salmon, chicken or beef... even tortilla chips... whatever you may traditionally use salsa with. My friend, Marc Marzullo, said this salsa was "refreshing, light, and delicious, and I especially like the vegetables chopped in larger chunks." Since this salsa is getting eaten up today, I didn't bother adding the lime juice. If you would like your salsa to last longer in your refrigerator, use vinegar instead of lime juice.

22 servings


1 lb vine-ripe, fresh tomatoes, coarsely chopped (start with about 1-1/2 lbs)1 lb chopped watermelon, seeds removed1 large candy onion, peeled and chopped (about ½ pound)3 – 4 jalapeno peppers (1 – 2 ounces) - or other hot seasonal peppers, to taste¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro½ tsp salt, or to tastefreshly ground pepper, to taste3 – 4 Tbsp fresh lime juice (1 – 2 limes), optional, or vinegar if you wish for the salsa to last longer in your refrigerator

Add the onion to the tomatoes and watermelon. Finely chop 2 of the jalapeno peppers to start with. Taste. If you desire more heat, add 1 – 2 more jalapenos. Mix in the cilantro. Add the salt and pepper, depending on your taste. Mix in the lime juice, if you wish.