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Homemade Salsa with Garden Tomatoes

I just love salsa. I am not a fan of hot salsas, I just love the blends of all the different flavors. As I was looking for salsa recipes, I realized that there are many different ways to make salsa, and that there are definitely no rules!

The good news is you have lots of choices in salsa ingredients and can make it to suit your family's tastes by making up your own recipe. That's what I did!

cooking salsa

My garden got off to a really slow start this year, but here it is at the end of August and my tomatoes are ripening faster than I can eat them. Not to mention I am the only person in my family who likes tomatoes! Last year I bought a pressure cooker and canned a bunch of spaghetti sauce. I don't know if I want to spend that much time on it this year, so I decided to try my hand at making homemade salsa.

I made my first batch of homemade salsa today, and it turned out fabulous! I did make up my own recipe, but you can use the recipe I created as a guideline to make your own salsa. Feel free to add and subtract to suit your tastes.

Homemade Salsa Recipe

12-15 medium-sized tomatoes
4 large cloves garlic
1 green bell pepper
1 onion
2 jalapeno peppers
Handful of cilantro

When looking at different salsas recipes, I saw that some people cook their salsa, and some people don't. I decided to cook mine because it blends the flavors together and mellows out the tomatoes. My family doesn't like to eat raw tomatoes, but they do like the cooked salsa. I like it either way.

My salsa would have been much easier to make with a food processor, but since I don't have one of those yet I chopped up all the vegetables and put them in a large sauce pan. It took probably 10-15 minutes to chop everything up. After I put everything but the lime in the pan, I squeezed half of the lime into the pan.

salsa and tortilla chipsNote: If you like you can peel your tomatoes before you add them to the pan. More about peeling tomatoes. I decided not to peel mine, I don't mind the peels in the salsa. Some people don't like the peels. It's up to you.

I let the salsa simmer on the stove for about 15 minutes, until the onions and peppers were soft. I couldn't wait until it was cool to taste it so enjoyed a bowl of warm salsa with tortilla chips. All I can say is, "Yum!". Seriously, it was so good.

As I stated earlier, you don't have to cook the salsa. You can just chop everything up, put it in a bowl, and eat it! You can also blend everything up in a blender if you don't like big chunks in your salsa. It's all a matter of preference.

If you like something a little sweeter you can add chopped up mango or peaches. Peach salsa is really good.

The salsa recipe I made above is VERY mild. I actually might add another hot pepper the next time I make it. If you like hot salsa, experiment with your peppers until you get the flavor you are trying to achieve. Don't forget that when you are chopping up hot peppers you should either wear plastic gloves or be VERY careful not to touch anything else and wash your hands right away.


Copyright 2011, Creative Homemaking, LLC.

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Rachel Paxton
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