A fresh and healthy condiment, this cranberry and persimmon salsa is brilliant with tacos of every kind, from grilled chicken to fried fish to carne asada. But you don’t need to save it for tacos. Use this fresh salsa recipe as you would any relish. It’s fantastic with Thanksgiving dinner!
Why you’re going to love this versatile fruit salsa
I was lucky enough to taste this recipe at an event hosted by the Baja spa Rancho La Puerta. And I promptly begged for the recipe. A remarkable dip or relish or topping, depending on how you use it, this mildly spicy fruit salsa offers a bit of the flavor and texture of a classic tomato salsa.
But along with the faint sting of fresh chile and the freshness of cilantro, this topping offers the mild sweetness of persimmon flesh. A persimmon salsa really is not unlike a tomato salsa. The texture and faint sweetness of the two fruits is similar. But this recipe brings in a new sensation with the gentle pop and tart zing of cranberries to help emphasize the persimmon’s gentle sweetness.
How to make cranberry persimmon salsa
This recipe makes a fresh salsa, which can be made a couple of hours in advance or right before you serve it. But it isn’t the kind of condiment that should sit overnight. In order to retain the vibrancy of both the relish’s flavors and textures, be sure to make it the day you plan to serve it.
The recipe calls for just eight seasonal ingredients, all of which you should be able to find in fall at your local grocery store:
- unseasoned rice wine vinegar
- red onion (you can substitute with a sweet onion)
- fresh cilantro leaves (if you really hate cilantro, you can omit it)
- Serano or Jalapeno pepper
- sea salt
- fresh lime juice
- Fuyu persimmons
What is a persimmon?
The persimmon fruit is the star of this recipe. Technically the fruit is a berry, although it certainly doesn’t look like one! Persimmons grow on trees. They ripen in the fall but can hang on the branches for months. There are many varieties of persimmons but the two most commonly grown and sold in the United States are the oval-shaped and blood orange-colored Hachiya and the cute, squat, creamsicle-colored Fuyu.
What kind of persimmons should you use in this recipe?
This recipe calls for using Fuyu. Fuyu persimmons are non-astringent, (less tannic than many other persimmon varieties), and get sweeter after picking. But don’t confuse ripening with rotting; use the fruit when it’s still somewhat firm.
Unfortunately, Hachiya persimmons are not a suitable substitute in this recipe. But if you can’t find persimmons, try this recipe mango instead. Although a little different than the persimmon version, a mango cranberry salsa is equally delicious.
How to use this relish recipe
I’ve used this fruit salsa as a healthy topping for fish. But you could also use this unique fruit salsa to add complexity as a topping for grilled skirt steak or with Thanksgiving turkey, used in place of cranberry sauce. Or try adding it to a roast chicken sandwich, as you would a cranberry relish. Or you can also do what we all love to do with any salsa. Serve this mildly spicy salsa with a big bowl of tortilla chips.
Of course, I also encourage you to serve this tangy fall fruit salsa on your next date night. Almost every recipe ingredient is an aphrodisiac. For starters, there are the chiles. The sweet sting of chile pepper is among the world’s most legendary aphrodisiacs. Then there’s the fact that lime, along with all citrus, is among the best foods for women’s sexual health.
And did you know that both cranberries and persimmons have aphrodisiac properties? Cranberries are an excellent source of antioxidants. Here’s more information about the aphrodisiac side of this crimson, fall fruit. Interestingly, persimmon, noted historically as an aphrodisiac, is also linked with anti-aging. And it is considered a good source of several nutrients vital to sexual health.
While you don’t necessarily have to serve this tempting salsa as part of a meal of seduction, (it’s also a great accompaniment for a Thanksgiving feast), it’s nice to know that you’re giving your body ingredients that are going to go to work for you!
More of my favorite healthy sauce & relish recipes
Cranberry Persimmon Fruit Salsa
- 1 cup Fresh cranberries
- 2-3 tbsp Rice wine vinegar unseasoned
- 1/4 cup Red onion finely chopped*
- 1/4 cup Cilantro leaves roughly chopped
- 1/4 Serrano or Jalapeño pepper seeded and minced
- Sea salt to taste
- 4 tbsp Fresh lime juice or to taste
- 4 Small Fuyu persimmons peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice**
- Cook cranberries very gently in sweet rice wine vinegar until skins pop. Monitor fluid level carefully.
- Set aside to cool.
- Combine all other ingredients in a serving bowl, adding cranberries and persimmons last.
- Serve over tacos or other grilled favorites.
This article was written in 2017 and most recently updated in November 2022.
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