- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Today’s gorgeous salsa is one of my all-time favorites. Try it on its own (a great brunch appetizer) or with grilled chicken or fish, or on any savory cornmeal-based preparation.

Bright green bits of avocado shine through in stunning contrast to the red onion, pink grapefruit and sunny mango.

The mango pulp thickens the grapefruit juices, giving this wonderful recipe a texture so luxurious that it could almost double as a tropical fruit salad or a dessert, if it didn’t contain the onion and cilantro.

You can make this up to 5 days ahead of time, if you leave out the avocado and cilantro until just before you’re ready to serve. Store it in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator.

Avocado-grapefruit-mango salsa

Try to find a perfectly ripe avocado that is still firm (heavy for its size, but with a slight bit of give).

1/3 cup minced red onion

2 cups boiling water

2 pink grapefruit

1 ripe mango

1 ripe avocado

Cayenne to taste

Torn cilantro leaves (optional)

Place the onion in a strainer over a bowl in the sink. Pour in the boiling water, and let it drain for at least 5 minutes.

Peel the grapefruit, then section it over a medium-sized bowl, to save all the juices.

Cut the mango off its pit, then peel it and cut the flesh into small pieces on a cutting board.

Add the mango to the grapefruit, scraping in as much of the messy, delicious mango pulp as you can retrieve from the cutting board.

Stir in the onion from Step 1. Cover and refrigerate until shortly before serving.

Pit, peel and dice the avocado just before serving, and gently stir it into the mixture. Add cayenne to taste, and garnish with a few torn cilantro leaves, if desired.

Serve cold.

Makes 2½ cups.

Mollie Katzen is the best-selling author of “Moosewood Cookbook” (Ten Speed Press). To contact her, go to www.molliekatzen.com.

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