James Rogan, senior sous chef at Frenchman's Reef and Morningstar Marriott Beach Resort in Saint Thomas, Virgin Islands, dropped by to brighten our day with these tropical treats from the sunny Caribbean:

• Tropical Fruit Salsa
Yield: 1 ½ cups

Ingredients:

½ cup fresh mango, ½" dice
¼ cup fresh pineapple, ½" dice
¼ cup fresh papaya, ½" dice
¼ cup sweet red pepper, 1/4" dice
¼ cup red onion, 1/4" dice
½ each fresh jalapeno chili, minced (seeds removed)
1 tsp. fresh ginger, minced
1 tbl. fresh limejuice
1 tsp. light brown sugar
To taste salt & pepper

1 tbl dark rum (optional)

Method:

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and gently toss to combine. Adjust seasoning to taste (sweet, sour, salty) if desired, add optional rum.
Hold at room temperature until ready to serve.
Salsa is best served freshly made, but will keep overnight refrigerated.

• Mojo Marinade Recipe
(Garlic citrus sauce)
Yield: 1 cup

Ingredients:

1/3 cup olive oil
8 garlic cloves, finely minced
2/3 cup sour orange juice* (or fresh lime juice)
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ cup cilantro (or parsley) chopped
Salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste

Method:

Heat the olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Do not brown.
Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a rolling boil for about 1 minute. Adjust seasonings to taste.
Remove from heat & cool completely.
Use as a marinade or table sauce for grilled or roasted meats & seafood.

* Note: sour oranges (and bottled juice) are available in Hispanic markets and some supermarkets. Fresh limejuice is an acceptable substitute.

Mojo will keep several days in the refrigerator. Commercial brands of mojo are available in Hispanic markets and many supermarkets.

For more information, visit: www.usvitourism.vi