Black Bean, Tropical Fruit and Queso Blanco Salsa

My talented friend chef Douglas Rodriguez gave me the inspiration for this salsa at a fantastic party he threw. Queso blanco, a staple of[ Latin cuisine, is uniquely textured, simply yet assertively flavored and quite pleasant to nibble. In this recipe, the cheese balances the acidity of the orange and mango. A no-brainer with chips, queso blanco salsa is a great accompaniment to grilled chicken breasts as well. You can prepare the dressing up to a day before you assemble the salsa. And the salsa is also good a day after — assuming there is any left over.]

Total Time:
20 min
Prep:
15 min
Cook:
5 min

Yield:
4 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • For the Salsa:
  • 1 cup well-rinsed, canned black beans
  • 1/3 cup finely diced red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped scallions, white and light green parts only
  • 1 Scotch bonnet chile, stemmed, seeded, and minced
  • 3/4 cup crumbled queso blanco
  • 3/4 cup diced mango
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped orange sections
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Spanish sherry vinegar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • 1 cup diced ripe avocado
  • For the Dressing:
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced shallot
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped Italian parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted and ground cumin seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons Spanish sherry vinegar
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Directions
  • To make the Salsa: In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients except the avocado in the order listed. Very gently, fold in the avocado, to avoid smashing the delicate ingredients. Cover and refrigerate until chilled.

  • To make the Dressing: In a small bowl, combine all ingredients and whisk them well. Cover and refrigerate. To serve, gently fold the dressing into the salsa. Season to taste and serve.


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