> New York Hudson Valley Eats & Treats!: Authentic Mexican Salsa - Gone before you know it!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Authentic Mexican Salsa - Gone before you know it!

La Costena chipotle peppers in Adobo 
Who doesn't like a good salsa?  That's right, nobody!  Salsa is delicious and healthy, and you can make your own at home for a fraction of the price of the jarred kinds.  As an added bonus, the salsa you make at home will be lights years better than any of the processed garbage that you find on the stores.  There ARE reasonably good jarred salsas, but most of them cost an arm and a leg, and it's always so more satisfying to make it yourself anyway :)

For this recipe, you will need:

A blender or food processor.

1 28 oz can of good quality diced tomatoes.  You can also use 2 or 3 fresh ones, or a combination.
vine-ripe tomatoes
Tomatoes on the vine
1 Whole small onion, chopped
2 Good fist fulls of fresh cilantro.  Don't skimp.  I'd say 1/4 of a large bunch.  Chopped.
3-4 Cloves of garlic, chopped.
2 Chipotle chiles in Adobo sauce, from the can.  Any brand will do, they're all wonderful.  Chop 'em!

1/4 teaspoon each: Cumin, white sugar, and salt.

You could also use a fresh Jalapeno pepper (chopped) in this recipe in lieu of the chipotles, but I love the sweet smokiness the chipotles give - they also give a level of heat to flavor ratio that makes this salsa good for everyone, whereas  fresh jalapenos can vary from medium to rather hot.

Brown onion
Fresh brown onion
Now that everything is chopped, put it all in the blender.  Pulse, DO NOT BLEND, pulse, maybe 10-12 times, until everything is mixed together nicely and intimately co-mingled.  If you put it on blend and give it a minute, the blender will puree everything to a sauce-like consistency - still tasty, but the texture will be ruined as far as dipping.
Bunch of cilantro
Fresh bunch of cilantro.  Yum!
Once pulsed, you're done!

Serve with tortilla chips and watch it vanish before your eyes.  For an added bonus, take those chips and spread them over the bottom of a foil-lined pan.  Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.  Grate a combination of Cheddar and Pepper-Jack cheeses over the tortilla chips, and leave in the oven for 5 minutes.  The cheese will be melted all over and you can then dip these delicious Nacho chips into the salsa for a suitable flavor explosion.  Your taste buds will sing a song of victory and celebration.
Garlic cloves
Garlic cloves add piquancy!
Please note that this recipe is a starting point for authentic Mexican salsa.  You may wish to add more heat, or make it more tomato flavored, or perhaps add more garlic.  Just be sure not to overdo it on any one ingredient so that the flavors come together into one, delicious, cohesive whole.
ground cumin
Ground cumin adds and earthy taste

This salsa will keep for about 2-3 days, if you actually manage to keep it around that long.  I made a batch when I got home from work today earlier, and between me and another person, it was gone in about 15 minutes.  And yes, it was rather spicy - but that just slowed us down a little bit.  As a matter of fact, writing this blog entry right now, I have half a mind to go and make another batch right now :)  But I guess I'll save it for this weekend when the lady can have some to enjoy as well - after all something this tasty should be shared with your loved ones, not hogged all to one's self :)  No need to be piggish about the whole affair, ehh ?

san marzano tomatoes
Cento Peeled Tomatoes
Always try to get San Marzano
if you can, they're the most flavorful!
Enjoy - and let me know how you like this salsa recipe.  I'd love to hear back from you about how you make your salsa - or what you've used this salsa on.

Take care!