After regularly savoring in San Diego my Mexican suegra's fresh salsa, most options on the average D.C. grocery store aisle taste blah.
Solution: I now make my own salsa, following simple steps inspired by my mother-in-law.
My Suegra's Simple Salsa Recipe
- 5-6 large red tomatoes or tomatillos
- 2 jalepeno or habanero peppers
- 1 small onion
- 4-5 cloves of garlic
- 1 tsp salt
- 2-3 limes
- Optional: 1/4 cup corn, 1 sweet bell pepper
Nota: I adapt the ingredients each time I prepare salsa based on what I have on-hand.
- Combine all veggies in a blender or food processor and squeeze in lime juice. When using red tomatoes, simply chop and add them fresh to the mix. For a salsa verde, peel and boil green tomatillos until soft before mixing your ingredients. For a fun flavorful twist, throw all of the veggies on the grill before they meet the blender. I share veggie grilling tips in Memorial Day Meatless Monday: Grill Out Vegetarian Style.
- Mix until the salsa has your desired texture. I usually blend until smooth.
- Taste and adapt. ¿Too spicy? Squeeze in more lime. ¿Too bland? Add more peppers. Experimenting is the best way to create the perfect recipe for you.
The key to a salsa with sabor is fresh ingredients. Now is a great time to prepare a homemade salsa because tomatoes are in season in the summer. Buy local produce from a neighborhood farmer’s market or grow your own tomatoes and peppers.
Fresh salsa is not only delicious, it's healthy. Flavor your meals with a salsa made with 100% vegetables over high-calorie additions like sour cream and cheese.
¿What to do with all of this salsa?
You can add this spicy seasoning to burritos, tacos, rice, frijoles or serve with chips. My favorite salsa-based meal is chilaquiles-- tortilla chips cooked in salsa. ¡Delicioso!
Making salsa is quick and muy fácil. Once you get the basics down you can make salsas that are so delicious, you’ll never again buy store bought.
¿Need Meatless Monday inspiration? Click here to read more of my recipes.
A teacher by day, The Wise Latina Club’s Natalie Wagner Fierro is the co-founder of the Institute for Student Health. She equally loves food (cooking or dining in Washington’s restaurants) and burning calories by distance running, practicing yoga, and archery. Click here to read more about and connect with Natalie.
Edited by: Viviana Hurtado, Ph.D.
What secret ingredient do you put in your salsa?