During the height of
cherry season, some artist
friends brought over a delectable fruit relish that they like to spoon over
fish. They referred to it as "Michael's Amazing Surinam Cherry Fruit Bowl." It’s incomparable to anything I’ve had. Sweet and tart and juicy, not
cooked like a chutney, and with complex layers of flavor. Even DH, who is not
generally crazy about sweet things, ate several helpings. It's kind of like a salsa, but fruity! Surinam
|Surinam cherries and other fruits over salmon|
I was fooled by this dish and thought it had some tomatoes, because of the juicy red pieces, but they were actually sour-sweet
cherries. I actually thought this was a variation of a fruity tomato salsa. Surinam cherries are still fruiting now, though the ones I have
access to are not producing as abundantly as a couple of months ago. Surinam
|These are lighter colored surinam cherries. |
They are very ripe and a bit tart.
When they are going off, I mean, producing a lot, you can end up with a lot of these little beauties. These big bushes seem to love
mild climate and I have seen them growing in lower Kula, along the side of the
mountain, and also in Haiku, about 800 feet above sea level. They can be made
into preserves and juiced, and used in a lot of ways, but this is the first
time I’ve had them over fish. This is
also a great way to use up lighter colored Hawaii cherries. Surinam
This adaptable recipe is from Michael and Karen O’Reilly, who express their art in many ways, including in the kitchen. I wrote about a visit to the O'Reilly art studio during the Maui Open Studios.
|Very challenging to take photos of food! I hope I've done this dish justice!|
Michael's Amazing Surinam Cherry Fruit Bowl (aka Surinam Cherry Relish)
A cup of
cherries, diced Surinam
A cup of mangos diced
A cup of pineapple diced
1/4 cup of chopped cilantro
1/8 to 1/4 cup of red pepper, diced finely
1/8 to 1/4 cup of green pepper, diced finely
1/8 to 1/4 cup of onion, diced finely. (
onion is a good bet.)
1/8 to 1/4 cup of celery, chopped thinly, across the stalk
Salt to taste
The smaller you chop the ingredients, the more flavors you’ll taste in one spoonful. I would try to keep my pieces no bigger than half an inch, and would cut the celery, pepper, and onion more finely than that.
Mix all ingredients together and as Michael says, “I just make it to taste - kinda wing it or make it up as you go along...” It’s a very flexible recipe, and you can adapt the amounts to your liking. Michael says it is great over salmon, but you can certainly try it with other kinds of fish to kick up the flavor. I also enjoyed spooning it out of the jar by itself. It’ll last for a couple of days in the fridge.
This recipe is also vegan, raw, and gluten-free. Enjoy!