I like this salsa for its bright flavors and simplicity – just a few ingredients, and you can throw it together in a few minutes of active time. I served it with tacos that I'll cover it my next post, but it could work well in a Southeast Asian context too, especially if you added lemongrass and/or ginger. It is plenty tasty to polish off with a bag of chips at midnight too; if there was a security camera in my kitchen, I could prove it.
You will have to butcher your own pineapple to make this, because if you buy it already cut up, it will be in chunks too small to grill effectively. I was going to describe how to do that, but it turns out there is a website devoted solely to that specific topic: howtocutapineapple.com. Talk about working a niche! Follow the pictures there through the part where the skin is fully removed, and then slice into vertical planks instead of horizontal. You'll only need half of it for this recipe, you can save the rest for a salad with tiny marshmallows and vegan spam chunks.
If you have a grill going for other reasons, just use that. If not, this Lodge cast-iron grill pan is a great alternative. It has a ridged grill on one side, which I used for the pineapple, and a flat griddle on the other, which I use for pancakes. Be sure and grill the pineapple long enough to drive off some moisture and develop caramelized flavors.
Grilled Pineapple Salsa
Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free
Yields about 1.5 cups
- 1/2 fresh pineapple, sliced into 3/8" thick planks (see above)
- canola oil for grilling
- juice of one lime
- 2 tablespoons minced shallot
- 1/4 to 1 jalapeno, depending on your heat preference, seeded and minced
- big handful of cilantro leaves
- salt to taste
- Brush one side of each plank of pineapple with canola oil and sprinkle on a little salt. Grill over medium high heat until dark grill marks develop. Brush and salt the other side and grill until done.
- Remove the pineapple from the grill, allow to cool until you can handle it safely, and cut into 3/8" dice.
- Combine with all of the other ingredients. If not using right away, hold off on the cilantro so it stays bright. Taste and and salt, lime juice, heat as needed.