I was reminded to make this salsa when I got a text from Mr.D that said “What kind? and which brand?” I’d asked him stop by the art store for white paint for a project I’m working on, and well … I hadn’t realized that it was like asking him to “just pick up a light bulb” … how many watts? soft? sunlight simulated? the curly ones?
With white paint … “What kind? Titanium, zinc, pearl, transparent? What size tube? Or the thick kind in the jars?”
So I called him and we figured it out. And then I kidded, “Well, it’s not like I asked you to just pick up some salsa.”
Because here in the Southwest there are entire areas within the grocery stores devoted to salsas. There are entire isles of salsas, can also be found in the Latin Food section, and in the refrigerated and frozen areas. Mild, medium, hot, flaming hot, green, red, corn, tomatilla, mango, black bean, chunky, smooth … and we haven’t even touched on the brands. I love my many salsa options.
In the summer, I prefer to make my own with fresh plum tomatoes …
… and fresh jalapenos. I have a simple method for determining heat levels … remove the stems and cut the jalapenos in half lengthwise….
Mild: remove all of the seeds and ribbed membrane
Medium: remove half of the seeds and membrane
Hot: go all in seeds and all
This recipe is just so darned easy and satisfying. Because the roasting creates an intense flavor … fire roasted with tell-tale bits of char. Then everything goes into a blender and you’re done.
First, I place the tomatoes, jalapenos, sliced onion and un-peeled garlic cloves on an olive oil doused baking sheet. (Lined with foil for easy clean-up.)
Under the broiler for 4 minutes, they begin to look like this. Flip everything with a fork …
… and 4 minutes later they look like this. The garlic will begin to blacken on the edges, so I remove them and ….
Broil for a final 4 minutes. The jalapenos are perfectly charred but not burned. The onions have char rings. And the kitchen smells like a Southwest campfire cookout.
I call this photo “The Last Cilantro”
Because it was the very last one at the market. Durango is having a terrific tourist season … the cafes, shops and markets are filled with happy people who’ve just rafted on the river, taken the train ride, or returned from a hiking excursion. And apparently are crazy for cilantro. So I was lucky to get this one that reminded me of a Charlie Brown Christmas tree.
Fresh cilantro really makes all the difference. I removed most of the stems and when packed it made 1/2 cup.
Another must is the juice of 2 limes, and the zest.
A little sugar to cut some of the savoriness, and a splash of cider vinegar. Peel the garlic. It all goes into a blender or food processor for 1 minute …
… and you’ve got 4 cups of party pleasing deliciousness. Seriously, people can’t stop eating this, they dip into it with a spoon … it’s that good and fresh. And healthy low sodium. Which reminds me … my recipe calls for only a smidge of salt and black pepper, so taste for your preference.
Dip with your favorite tortilla chips, pour over grilled fish, nachos, spoon over tacos.
And now if you’ll excuse me I need to scoot and text Mr.D …..
“Hon, would you pick up some pasta?”
Really? Okay. Thin, tri-color, round, bow tie, tube, corkscrew? …
:- ) Amy
Tomato-Jalapeno Oven Roasted Salsa
|Meal type||Condiment, Side Dish|
- 10 plum tomatoes (stem ends cut off)
- 4 large cloves garlic (not peeled)
- 3 jalapenos (stemmed, halved, seeded)
- 1 small (or half of a large) onion (cut in 1/4 inch slices)
- 3 Tblsp olive oil
- 1 small bunch cilantro (stems removed)
- juice and zest of 2 limes
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- splash of cider vinegar
- more salt if desired
Makes: 4 cups
|Place oven rack to top position and set the oven to broil.|
|Pour the olive oil onto a rimmed baking sheet. (If you like, line the sheet with foil first for easier clean up.) Place the tomatoes, garlic, jalapenos and onion onto the sheet.|
|Place under the broiler, keeping the oven door open a bit so you can watch the vegetables as they begin to char. Broil for 4 minutes or until the tomatoes have charred and the jalapenos have blistered.|
|Take pan out of the oven and turn everything with a fork. Place back under the broiler for 4 more minutes, again keeping an eye on them and checking that the garlic doesn't burn. (You may need to take the garlic out early if it blackens.)|
|Take pan out of the oven, remove the garlic and set aside. Turn everything again and broil for 4 more minutes or until the onions and jalapenos have blackened char marks but have not burned.|
|Remove from the oven, turn off the broiler. Allow to cool for 20 minutes.|
|Peel the garlic, the skins should slide off easily.|
|Place everything into a food processor or blender, along with the cilantro, lime, sugar, salt and pepper. Add a splash of cider vinegar. (Depending on the size of your appliance, you may want to do this in two batches.)|
|Blend on high until the salsa is smooth, about 1 minute. This is a low sodium recipe, you may want to taste for salt preference. Serve with tortilla chips. |
|Note: This salsa is also a great topping for tacos, nachos, over fish ... a fresh addition to many dishes.|