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Salsas for the 4th

What you are looking at is my no-fail, family-favorite guacamole, which I brought to a 4th of July fireworks watching party last night. The hostess loved it and kept going back for more, as did several of the guests. This is one of my internationally-tested recipes, created by me when I lived in Italy and was missing a taste of home. You can find the directions for making it here.

The base for the guacamole is my sure-fire-hit Pico de Gallo recipe. This is best made several hours in advance of eating it, ideally the morning of the day you are going to serve it, as I did yesterday. That way, the flavors have time to come together and you can adjust the seasonings, and heat, accordingly. The recipe is found at the same link as the guacamole one above. This batch benefited from the gorgeous early-season tomatoes that I found at the Greenmarket on Saturday.

One of the real stars of my salsa trio, however, is a recipe that I cannot claim to have created. I found it years ago as a tiny sidebar in Real Simple. The Papaya Mint Salsa* is perfect as a sweet-spicy accompaniment to seared or grilled fish or seafood. It also stands well on its own scooped up with tortilla chips, as we ate it last night. With papayas now in season, and the temperatures rising in favor of no-cook grazing style meals, I definitely recommend giving this dish a slot in your meal rotation.

*Kitchen Witch Tips:

I think that the point of the sidebar was to feature the mezzaluna, a wonderful kitchen implement that I encourage you to buy, if you do not have one already. I bought one years ago, and it is perfect for those times when you need to chop anything very, very finely. There are also double-bladed ones, but I find that this one works well for what I need on a day-to-day basis. As you can see from the photo below, a few minutes under the mezzaluna, and the mint is chopped in very small bits, ready to be incorporated into the salsa dish.

Buon appetito!

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