Saturday, January 25, 2014

Fresh Salsa AKA Salsa Crack

We are in full swing Breaking Bad addiction. Everyone did warn us before we began. Once we get the little monster to sleep, it's time for episode after episode of Walter White, Jesse and all the characters in between. I've been keeping this salsa around for the occasion. Inevitably, at some point during the Marathon, we both want a movie snack. The guy loves pretzels and cream cheese. Weird, I know, but actually amazing. Unfortunately, cream cheese has a great relationship with my thighs so I stick with salsa, a nutritional and low cal snack. 

This recipe tastes like it should be very bad, super fattening and hazardous to your health...bonus points! Paired with a low fat chip, a baked tortilla cut into forths or a low carb grain cracker instead of real chips and it's a whole package of goodness. If you're not yet sold, my 3 year old will obliterate a bowl of this salsa...and he doesn't knowingly consume vegetables typically, but will devour a bowl full of tomatoes in salsa form. AAAnnnddd ... I've heard this is the "best salsa ever" ... SO, there's that. It's the Breaking Bad of salsas, the Walter White Special Blend, the Blue Meth version of Salsa. For the record, I'm not actually promoting meth use, but I do love Walter White. I hope you'll understand! :)

Give it a try for your next office potluck or family function. Feel free to leave comments or message me suggestions, feedback, etc… I love hearing about cooking experiences!

Fresh Salsa AKA Salsa Crack

11 Tomatoes (Roma or Vine Ripe preferred)
2 Green Onions, chopped
½ Shallot Clove, grated
1 ½ Small Jalapenos (or 1 large), grated
2 Small Limes
1 Lemon
1 Tbsp Dried Minced Garlic
Salt and Black Pepper, to taste

Fill a large pot with water, halfway and get boiling on the stove. While the water heats up, clean and score the tomatoes. To score the tomatoes, cut a large “X” just under the skin but not too deep into the flesh. Also, cut out the woody tops out that you won’t want in the salsa.

Once the pot of water is boiling, turn water off and add the tomatoes to the water, cover with a lid and allow it to sit.

While the tomatoes “steam” prep the other ingredients.

Chop to green onions, whites and tops, to a fine chop- not too large of pieces, but not minced. Add to a medium ceramic bowl.

With a fine grater, grate the shallot into bowl.  

Grate jalapeno into the bowl, seeds and all- everything but the stem. The seeds stay whole as you grate the jalapeno.

Add the dried minced garlic or you can always replace with 2 Tbsp of Fresh Grated Garlic instead. Use what is easier for you, and on hand!

Squeeze one whole lemon and 2 whole limes, remove seeds before adding to the bowl.

Now for the tomatoes. Drain the water from the tomatoes. They will be pretty hot at this point and lightly cooked but not mush. I let them sit out for about 20 minutes to let the air cool them enough to handle.

Once they have cooled enough to handle, you’ll see the skins usually start to curl away from the flesh where you scored them. Just peel the skin right off, kind of like peeling a boiled egg. Reserve the tomatoes in a bowl and throw skins out.

With the tomatoes in the bowl, squeeze the juice from them to collect in the bowl, and chop the tomato flesh into medium diced size pieces. The juice and chop tomatoes get added to the mix you are refrigerating. Give everything a good stir, add a generous dose of salt and maybe a tsp of black pepper.

I add the cilantro at the very end, LOTS OF CILANTRO. I usually use one whole bunch, stems removed, rinsed and chopped. Add to the bowl.

Cover and refrigerate for at least a couple of hours to chill, up to a few days. This kind of thing just gets better and better. I’d say it is good for 3 days max, though I doubt it will last long before being demolished!

A side note, the whole recipe takes about 20 minutes or less from start to finish. You can make it a 10-minute-or-less-recipe by replacing the fresh tomatoes with 2 cans of whole, peeled tomatoes. The two differences I notice with the canned preparation are: 1) canned tomatoes seem over stewed and loose the texture of gently steaming them. I don’t really know the why’s and how’s of it, but because I don’t actually boil them to cook, just let them kind of take a very hot bath, the tomato looses its raw taste but keeps some texture. I mean, I’m guessing but it sounds good, right? 2) canned tomatoes keep that tin like flavor, that ever so subtle canned flavor that usually gets cooked out in a sauce or stew. The acid and cilantro masks it, but it’s just enough to know it’s not fresh.

With that said and done, I'm going to go watch more Breaking Bad now so...Happy Cooking!!


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