Once again it is the salsa time of year. Nope not the Dancing With the Stars salsa kind of thing but the very excellent tomato kind of salsa that is wonderful with corn chips. My husband would argue that there is nothing in salsa that is good but I would argue that he is definitely wrong on that one.
I got this salsa recipe years ago from a person that I used to work with. I love it when I can remember who I received recipes from and where we were. It brings back such good memories that way when you start to bake, can, or prepare food. Food becomes about more than just something you eat and as much about remembering people and places.
On a side note I saw this gal in the grocery store today….I have not seen her for years! We had a lot of fun standing in the grocery store aisle catching up on each others lives. It has probably been about 17+ years since I last worked with her but it felt like yesterday once I saw her. It still brings a smile to my face!
Salsa is one of the main reasons that my garden contains onions, peppers of various kinds, and tomatoes. I typically use the Roma paste tomatoes for salsa as they are firmer and meatier. The batches I made today contain a mixture of tomatoes as my Romas did not perform that great this year.
Today was the day that the salsa making has begun. Yesterday I picked the tomatoes and peppers and today I washed, sliced, chopped, simmered and canned 13 quarts and 14 pints of wonderful salsa goodness.
This is the recipe that I have used for years. It can be tweaked to your own taste for hotness depending how much heat you or your family likes.
18 large red tomatoes
10 large green tomatoes
5 green bell peppers
8 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups vinegar
4 teaspoons dried cilantro
4 teaspoons Watkins salsa season blend
3 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 – 12 oz. cans tomato paste
Chop tomatoes, peppers, and onions.
Put in 8 – 10 quart pot
Add rest of ingredients.
Simmer, stir frequently, do not let burn.
Put in jars and process.
Quarts: 30 minutes boiling water bath
Pints: 25 minutes boiling water bath
NOTE: Watkins no longer makes the salsa season blend that has dried bits of peppers etc.
I have been using a salsa blend from either Costco (Great American Fiesta Fresh Salsa Mix) or
Tastefully Simple (All Natural Simply Salsa Mix)
To adjust the heat level either add jalapenos, chili powder and cayenne pepper or reduce amount.
It is also personal preference if you want to scald the red tomatoes and skin them or just chop with skin on.
I also had my diffuser running today. When I
can or process anything with onions or garlic
I always use my diffuser. My favorite
essential oil to use for this is a blend called
Purification. It does a great job of helping contain
the onion and garlic smell. (It also works great
when cooking fish.)
At least I had the diffuser running for about three minutes…… then my husband came in, muttered “Wheeewww!!” and threw all the windows open. Fortunately, these last few days have been the perfect kind of days for canning….cooler and not as muggy.
I will have to check with my kids to see what their salsa requirements are for the coming year. As long as the garden produce holds out I just keep canning. Once the salsa is done it will be time to move on to either tomato juice or tomato soup. That one is a tough choice as I like both.
I like to use this salsa for chips and I also put it into chili soup for a little flavor boost. What is your favorite way to use salsa?
“If you eat enough salsa
it just burns the calories out of the chips.”
(this might not be a word for word quote but it is how I remembered it.)