Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Salsa, Ole!

Last week CM and I canned some salsa.

I grew plants in our garden especially for this purpose.

This is good salsa. One recipe makes about 24 - 26 jars. That should last a few months... I hope.

We eat it like it's candy here at our house.

• This is all the stuff you need. Although, I had another basket of tomatoes just like that one.

• My kitchen is ready to go.

• We planted "Big Mama" roma tomatoes from Burpee. They are bigger then regular roma tomatoes as you can see here in my hand. Roma tomatoes are great for salsa because they aren't as juicy so your salsa is less watery. 


• First "scald" Your tomatoes in boiling water. That means put them in a pot of boiling water for about 30 seconds until the skin splits when you pierce it with a fork (see picture).

• After they are scalded the skin peels off really easily. Cut off any bad parts and chop up. Measure, (I use an 8 cup liquid measuring bowl. 2 quarts is 8 cups so fill the bowl 5 times) and dump in a big stock pot. My stock pot holds 20 quarts and that is plenty big.

• Then seed and chop your peppers. My hubby seeded them and chopped them in that little electric chopper. Pour them in the pot with the tomatoes.

*WARNING* Wear gloves when you chop the hot serrano peppers. They will burn your hands.
CM didn't believe me (as you can see in the picture). He's a big tough man, gloves are for sissies.
But his hands were burning for the rest of the day.

• Then chop your cilantro and garlic. Mix it all up together in the stock pot along with the seasoning ingredients.

• Bring to a boil and add in the cornstarch to thicken. Stir it all up.

Yum, you can open a bag of chips and start tasting this now. Just for good measure ya know. *wink* 

In fact you might need to pour some in a bowl and taste it often just to make sure it really turned out.


Here is our taster. He and son #2 ate that whole bag of chips, and a few bowls of salsa right then.

• Ladle the salsa into jars fresh from the dishwasher. Fill to about 1/2 inch from the top.

• Wipe the rims with a damp paper towel and put the seals on.

• Put on the rings but don't over tighten, only tighten enough to keep the seals in place.

• Bring the water in the canner up to a boil and then let it simmer at a rolling boil for 45 min.

I had lots of left over tomatoes so I just canned them alone. In order to do that you just scald, chop, fill jars and add 1 tsp of vinegar and 1/2 tsp of salt to each jar. which is what I did in the above picture.

If you have never preserved before, It's not hard but it does take time. I recommend starting out with tomatoes or peaches. Also pick up this book to teach you the basics. It's easy to follow with great illustrations and instructions.

Here are our finished jars. Aren't they pretty? I just love having them on hand for quick meals or snacks.

Our favorites?
Chips and salsa of course.
Quesadillas, taco salad.
But sometimes in the morning I pour a jar of salsa in the crock pot and add a few frozen chicken breasts. I let it cook all day and then shred up the chicken and we eat this over rice or rolled up in a tortilla.

Here's the recipe:

Julie's Salsa (from my Aun't Julie who is an amazing cook)
10 quarts tomatoes, peeled and chopped
6 c. chopped onions (I use 2 c. dehydrated onions, I avoid chopping onions as much as possible.)
12 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 bell peppers, finely chopped
10 Serrano peppers, finely chopped (these are the spicy peppers, so double if you want spicy salsa)
12 Anaheim peppers, finely chopped
2 bunches cilantro, finely chopped
3 tsp. Oregano
3 T. ground cumin
10 T. red wine vinegar
6 T. salt
1 T. pepper
1 c. cornstarch (put the cornstarch in a jar and add about 1 c. water. Shake it up till powder is dissolved.)

Combine all the ingredients except the corn starch in a large stock pot. Mix thoroughly and bring to a boil. Stir in corn starch to thicken. If it is not thick enough add in more cornstarch dissolved in hot water 1/4 c. at a time till desired consistency. Fill clean pint jars with hot salsa. Process pints 45 minutes, quarts 55 minutes.

Hope you give it a try! - RM

1 comment:

Lauren @ My Wonderfully Made said...

How yummy and pretty it all looks! Glad you mentioned the gloves -- I thought I was being so careful when freezing some peppers last week and must have snagged a pepper seed or two on my skin -- burned for hours!


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