Cherries are the first fruit to arrive towards the end of spring and the summer here in Northern California. When the trees are laden with them, you have to pick and eat as many as you can, before the worms and birds get to them. If your cherries are juicy, the salsa will be juicy too. If you want the salsa less juicy, put the finished salsa into a fine-meshed strainer and strain off some of the excess juice.
Grilled Chicken with Cherry Salsa
Prep: 10 min / Cook: 20 min / Total: 30 min
- 1-1/2lb cherries, pitted and roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup minced red onion
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 chicken breasts, pounded to uniform thickness
- extra virgin olive oil
- salt & pepper
1. Pit and de-stem the cherries. A cherry pitter is magical for this task, but if you don’t have one, use a small knife.
2. Put the cherries, onions and chopped basil into a food processor. Pulse a few times until you have a chunky salsa, with differing textures of cherry. Alternately, you can chop everything by hand.
3. Combine cherries, red onion, lemon juice, basil, balsamic vinegar, honey, and salt in a bowl. Place into the refrigerator while you grill the chicken.
4. Brush both sides of the chicken breasts with oil then season liberally with salt and pepper.
5. Grill over medium-high heat for 4 minutes a side, or until cooked all the way through.
6. Let rest for 5 minutes before topping with fresh cherry salsa.