Heirloom Tomato Salsa with Ancho Grilled Prawns

Every summer sun-kissed, colorful, juicy heirloom tomatoes get my mouth absolutely watery. Rich, deep and meaty, these tomatoes have fantastic flavors and texture. They also have such a great balance of sugar and acid that it’s easy to pop them into my mouth all day long. How thirst quenching they are on a warm Summer day! This season, in order to enjoy the great pleasure of heirloom tomatoes, beyond just snacking, I’ve decided to make a salsa with them to serve with ancho grilled prawns, rice and beans in my California kitchen.

First, finely chop one red onion and mix it with a pinch of sea salt in a bowl. Next, finely dice 2 large ripe red heirloom tomatoes (i.e. Pantano Romanesco or Sainte Lucie varietals) and combine with the chopped onion, ½ cup cilantro (chopped), juice from ½ lemon, juice from ½ lime, 1 Tablespoon jalapeno (chopped), some sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste in the bowl. Mix all ingredients well with a spoon. Separately, de-shell 1 lb prawns except tails and marinate with pinch of sea salt, 1 Tablespoon 7th taste ancho chili olive oil, 1 green onion (chopped), 1 Tablespoon cilantro (chopped), juice from ½ lemon and juice from ½ lime in a small bowl. Next, heat some 7th taste ancho chili olive oil on a pan and grill the prawns for a couple of minutes. Finally, serve them with the heirloom tomato salsa and rice and beans on side.

This salsa is very aromatic and packed with distinctively sweet, tangy and herbal flavors. The crunchy red onion and soft heirloom tomatoes give a nice texture variation, while balanced acid and a mild heat linger on my mouth for a long time. The heirloom tomatoes’ refreshing flavors beautifully shine through in every bite of this salsa. It’s truly invigorating and addictive. I could barely stop myself from just picking up the bowl and drinking the whole liquid of this salsa! But, I force myself to wait. This heirloom tomato salsa gets even better when eaten with my ancho chili oil soaked citrus-y prawns and a bowl of rice and beans.  It adds tons of vibrant flavors to these dishes.  So, enjoy them together during one of these balmy Summer days. Enjoy my recipe and the heirloom tomato season. Happy cooking!

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