Sunday, May 8, 2011

Hearty Salsa

I love, love, love salsa! It's one of my absolute favorite foods to eat and share with friends and family. As an Arizona native, it's only fitting that I have my very own version of this popular southwest sauce. I made some earlier in the week for a Cinco De Mayo get together at work so I thought I'd share it with you.

The preparation takes a chunk of time (about an hour if you're working by yourself) but it's well worth it. This recipe is for a massive amount...about a gallon! I'm afraid I don't have a smaller recipe because this is the quantity that I'm used to making but you can cut the quantities in half and I'm sure yours will be just as tasty.  

When family and friends know that I am going to make salsa, they're all too happy to take some off of my hands.  It's a great gift idea too.   

Here are the ingredients:
Peppy music to put you in a festive mood
Corona Light beer
4 limes (squeeze for juice)
12 Roma tomatoes (or 6 large tomatoes)
1/2 bunch of fresh cilantro
3/4 large onion
5 cloves of garlic
4 avocados
5 jalapenos
1/2 tablespoon of sugar
1/4 teaspoon of black pepper
8 oz of roasted green chilies (fresh or canned)
4 cans of El Pato sauce (Mexican Hot Tomato Sauce)
salt to taste

First of all, I hope wherever you live that you can find El Pato sauce.  I think most Walmart stores sell it in the ethnic foods area.  This is what the can looks like:
Now put some music on, preferably something lively like the following (click to listen & view):
or listen to (go all the way to the bottom of the page and select "salsa."  I play it through Itunes because there's less buffering.)

Pop open an ice cold bottle of Corona Light, take a swig, and now you're ready. Let's do it!

Dice tomatoes and put in a large bowl.  When I say large, I mean LARGE.  Its got to be big enough to hold about a gallon of veggies and liquid.  I normally use a big spaghetti sized serving container.

For your sanity and to reduce teary eyes, use a food processor for the next few ingredients.  Put the setting on "chop."  Slice the jalepenos and put them in the food processor for a few seconds until they are finely chopped.  You want the pieces to be small enough so that the pepper will be evenly distributed throughout the salsa.  Do the same for the onions, garlic, and green chilies.

For the cilantro, rinse well and separate the leaves from the stems. Discard stems. Put leaves in the processor for a few seconds until the leaves are in small pieces.

As you chop the jalapenos, onions, garlic, green chilies, and cilantro in the processor, add them to your diced tomatoes in the big bowl. Stir together until well mixed.

Remove seed and skin from the avocados.  Dice the avocados in small pieces and add to the rest of your ingredients (as shown in photo below). 

Add the El Pato sauce and freshly squeezed lime juice.  The lime juice will add a yummy tartness to the salsa. In addition, it keeps the avocados from turning brown.  Add sugar then add salt and pepper to taste. Stir well.

Since this is a large quantity, I use several Tupperware containers and/or glass jars to store it in. Refrigerate immediately.  Keep in mind that this salsa will have strong garlic and onion flavors, so if you use plastic containers, it's going to take on the aroma of these two ingredients. 

All that is left now is to open up a bag of corn tortilla chips and dip them into your salsa! 

If you have any questions, send me an email and I'll be happy to get back to you.