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Back in July I put out a call for salsa recipes and got a few good ones from Lesli, blogging at The Peterson Farm in Georgia, Rachelle, The Accidental Gardener and Sierrabella at Sierrabella’s Garden in the California foothills. Yesterday, I finally managed to make homemade salsa. Why have I not been doing this, oh, for the last twenty years or so? So easy and delish!

Both recipes call for tomatoes, onion, peppers and garlic, but Lesli’s mentions peeling the tomatoes and Rachelle’s calls for the addition of fresh lime juice and cilantro. I decided to grab a bit o’ this and a bit o’ that from each recipe. We’re still talking super simple and super easy.

— Tomatoes (I used ‘Early Girl’ and ‘Costoluto Genovese’ because that’s what I had on the vine… quantity should be similar to about 6 Roma tomatoes)
— 2 ‘Fresno’ Chili Peppers
— 1 clove garlic
— juice of one lime
— one onion
— salt to taste

I wore latex gloves from the get-go because I’m a big chicken. Proving even more what a big chicken I am, I used greenish Fresnos because the red ones are much hotter. Ok, and I scraped out the seeds. I was probably one step away from leaving the hot peppers out entirely.

Well… I’m proud to report that the results didn’t quite have enough kick for me. I’m tougher than I thought, despite my Irish potato-lovin’ genes, and will try the red ones next. Pretty soon I’ll be saying, “‘Fresno’ chili peppers? Zey are nothing to me. I eat zem whole, right off the vine. I bathe in a bathtub full of them. Is like a milk bath, only milder.”

Or not.

Seeding the peppers

Peeling the tomatoes

Blending ingredients

Verdict: Flavor is fresh… and sweet compared to store-bought salsa. The garlic and onion are essential and don’t overpower the tomato flavor. Salt definitely boosts and balances the overall flavor. You could leave it out if you’re eating the salsa with salted chips, but if your chips are unsalted, go ahead and salt the salsa. Guacamole would of course make a fabulous accompaniment to the salsa and chips.

I’m still a chunky salsa virgin and salsa verde virgin. Thanks, again, Sierrabella, for the salsa verde recipe. I need to scare up some tomatillos.

Ok, who knows the best tomato varieties for making salsa besides ‘Roma’?

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