I love salsa. I love it because my sweet husband and three hungry kids love it. I love it because it’s healthy and delicious and so easy. I love it because you can serve it pretty much anytime, anywhere and people will love you for making it. Viva Mexico!
I call this the tale of two salsas and though the varieties of salsas are endless, my post today and tomorrow will teach you how to make my favorite two. Salsa requires very few ingredients (more reasons to love it) and using the best quality produce is essential for great taste. But did you know there is a way to make mediocre vegetables good and great vegetables even better? It’s as simple as roasting them. Even the blandest grocery store tomato can be redeemed with this simple technique.
A paste tomato (such as Roma) works best here as they render less liquid but when I have heirlooms out in my garden I can’t resist their Siren call. Just drain off the extra liquid after roasting and you’ll be fine. I like to use Anaheim peppers but you can mix it up with a Poblano or Jalapeno depending on how hot you like it. Coat the veggies in extra-virgin olive oil, put them on a roasting pan, generously sprinkle with salt and pepper and in the oven they go.
The veggies come out all caramelized and smelling divine. After it all cools, remove the skin and seeds from the peppers. You can remove the skin from the tomatoes if you want but it’s not necessary. It’s easy so I usually do.
Stick the veggies in your food processor or blender along with the remaining ingredients. I like to blend it pretty well so it turns out like the salsa they bring to your table at those nice Mexican restaurants.
Sometimes I don’t have fresh cilantro or limes on hand. Instead of running out to the grocery store for one or two things, I just pull out my essential oils! I love using essential oils for cooking and I always use therapeutic grade oils since I know these oils are pure enough to take internally. If you use a different brand just make sure it says “For Dietary Use” on the bottle.
No matter how many bags of tortilla chips I buy, it always seems that we are opening the last one. That’s the power of a good salsa. It can also be very frustrating. Be prepared and buy extra bags of chips. You’ll thank me later.
Roasted Summer Salsa
6 Roma or other paste tomatoes
1 small onion, sliced
1 Anaheim pepper (or substitute for a Jalapeno or other hot pepper)
5 cloves garlic
2 tbsp. olive oil
Salt and pepper
1/2 c. fresh cilantro (or 4-5 drops cilantro essential oil)
juice from 1/2 lime (or 3-4 drops lime essential oil)
1/4 tsp. chipotle chile pepper powder (optional, can use more or less to taste)
Heat oven to 425 degress F. Coat tomatoes, peppers, onions and garlic in olive oil and place on a rimmed sheet pan. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast in oven for 20 minutes or until veggies are soft and fragrant. Once everything has cooled, peel skin off peppers and remove stem and seeds. Peel tomatoes if desired. Transfer all veggies to a food processor and add cilantro (or cilantro essential oil), lime juice (or lime essential oil), chile powder and a generous pinch of salt. Pulse until you have reached your desired consistency.
Makes about 3 cups (which in my house will last two days, tops). Enjoy!