Roasted Cherry and Red Pepper Salsa

My dad would have been 69 today. Who knows if he would have made it this far? There is always something.

You know, you start to watch the way the light hits things differently over the course of a period of time. That might be the most prominent thing in my experience of this blog. The light. Perhaps a plate is moved to the left a bit, or the table gets edged farther from the wall. The vase is repositioned so as not to create unwanted shadow. Not that shadows can’t be interesting, of course.

But, aside from the time of day you choose, and the level to which you open the blinds, and the speed at which you prepare something–

You do not control the light.

I think I mostly started noticing in the last year and a half or so, the way it changes as the recipe unfolds on the table before me. I suppose it’s a bit of a metaphor, isn’t it?

The way we reflect and refract and reverberate.

I keep thinking about how my dad used to sit in front of his huge fish tank for hours. He was mesmerized by them. He would call me out of my room to search for one, if it was missing. The phone calls stopped months before he died, but I hope he never lost interest in those fish of his.

His simplified taste (think: Little Debbies, Oscar Meyer, and creamed corn) would not have lent well to cherries-let alone roasted ones-in salsa. They are excellent this way, nonetheless. Especially paired with the red peppers roasted alongside, and tomatoes and scallions and lime.

I can picture him next to me these days. I think it is because he is these days. And I think that is because of the love you helped me to send to him this winter. Thank you for that.

Let’s dig in, with chips or tacos or haloumi and also this mixtape of memories and miscellaneous.

One Year: Berry Goat Cheese Shortcake Ice Cream Sandwiches
Two Years: Shallot Marinade with Chili and Turmeric
Three Years: Peach Strawberry Lassi
Four Years: Raspberry Cream Cheese Breakfast Buns

Roasted Cherry and Red Pepper Salsa
Makes about 1 1/2 cups

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup pitted dark, sweet cherries, halved
1 red bell pepper, deseeded and thinly sliced
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup red onion, diced
2 large, red tomatoes, deseeded and diced
2 scallions, light green parts only, thinly sliced
1/4 cup lime juice
1 tbsp granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Drizzle olive oil over cherries and bell pepper. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes, sea salt, and freshly ground black pepper, tossing to combine. Roast for about 10 minutes, redistributing halfway through, until the cherries and peppers are softened, but with bite. Let cool completely before proceeding with the rest of the salsa. Once cool: in a large bowl combine cherries, bell pepper, and juices with red onion and tomatoes. Stir in scallions, lime juice, and sugar. Season to taste with salt. Keep refrigerated in an airtight container for up to four days.


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