Friday, September 7, 2012



   I love to cook, and I really love to bake. And of course I love to eat! Most of the stuff I make goes straight to my belly. And not in the good digestion way, but  in the, I'm gonna hang out here and jiggle kinda way. So for the most part I try to contain myself.
   This is the recipe I am most famous for in my family. It is also one that I can eat a lot of without feeling guilty. You'll find that I am an extremely precise cook. I'll use lots of technical terms like "some" or "a handful" or even the complex "about". And I promise I wont leave out ingredients so that mine will always taste better, like my grandma does. Or give you the recipe written in Finish. Also like my grandma does. ;)

Erin's Salsa

1 can stewed tomatoes (whatever brand, whatever blend you like)
1 largish onion (I'm fond of Walla Walla's or Maui Sweets, but white is just fine)
2 good sized jalapeños
2 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
2-4 tablespoons hot sauce (start with 2 and keep adding until you like the flavor)
Juice of half a lime
Salt & Pepper to taste

   I've used many ways to make this salsa, with a food processor, blender, most recently with a Pampered Chef food chopper. Sometimes I've hand cut it all with a knife. I'll use whatever is handy.    Hand cutting gets the chunkiest salsa, if you like it more smooth, go with a food processor. I get the most varied results with the blender, but most often it is very smooth, with very little texture. I like this when I plan to eat it with popcorn. 
   I know, it's weird, but it is healthy and sooooo good. Try it. Oh, don't just poor the salsa over the popcorn. That's disgusting. Dip my friends, dip. This is a great mindless TV munchie.

1. Drain the liquid out of the tomatoes into a medium sized bowl. You want that liquid! Dice the tomatoes and add them to the bowl.
2. Dice the onion and garlic and add to the bowl.
3. Cut off the ends of the jalapeños. It should be shaped like a tube. Using a spoon scoop out the seeds and membrane. Discard. Be careful about touching the jalapeños. And be sure to wash your hands well afterwards. And maybe just keep them to yourself. Don't, you know, clean gubbers out of your six month old's eye, and leave her screaming in agony. Or something stupid like that. Ehem. I now use the little plastic produce bag as a glove.
4. Dice the jalapenos and add them to the bowl.
5. Pick a good sized handful of cilantro leaves. Bunch and roll it into the tightest ball you can. Dice it up, and throw it in the bowl. If 20% of your blood is made up of cilantro, like my hubby, add more. If you're not such a big fan, stick to a small handful of leaves.
   *If your using a blender or food processor, all you really need to do is cut the veggies into manageable pieces and toss them in. Pulse until you get desired consistency. Then add the rest of the ingredients.
6. Add the first two tablespoons of the hot sauce and the juice of half a lime. Add a few good pinches of salt and and one of pepper.
7. Stir it all up and give it a try. If you want to make it taste more fresh, or tomatoey, cut up some fresh tomatoes. If you want to taste more like restaurant, or canned salsa add more hot sauce.

A few more notes:
* This recipe also tastes wonderful with fresh tomatoes. When we lived in Hawaii, the commissary didn't always have the best produce. Weird, huh. So that's when I started to use the canned. And it stuck. If you do want to go fresh, use three large tomatoes, stems cut off.
* If you like it hot, add another jalapeno, or even add a Serrano to the two jalapenos.
* If you aren't a fan of the heat, skip the jalapenos, and go for a Anaheim or two. These taste SO good in this recipe.
* The lime and garlic help preserve this salsa, but not for long. This needs to be eaten within 2 weeks.
* This is a great base recipe. Add a cup of frozen corn, don't even thaw. Drained black beans are also delish.
* Salsa isn't just for chips. I love it on Triscuits. Try it over grilled chicken. Or like I said earlier, with popcorn. My two year old, Alli, eats it with a spoon. No joke, the kid loves salsa.

A final note, please excuse the lack of the tilde over some of the n's in jalapeno. For some reason, my computer automatically put it on some, but wouldn't on others. To be honest, I wasn't feeling the drive to investigate, and fix the irregularity. Carry on.

1 comment:

  1. Also, if you use fresh tomatoes and seed them, it's wonderful to add in pureed or chunked fresh mangos. Yum! Also super easy to can in a hot water bath.