Friday, August 12, 2011

Hometown's Salsa

Somehow I ended up growing cayenne peppers this summer. I didn't plan to, I actually thought I was planting jalapenos but when the peppers started coming in they were long and skinny. It didn't really take me too long to figure it out. Not only did I have cayennes but they were incredibly prolific with the bushes literally loaded down with peppers. So I figured I'd make salsa.
After some initial research and experimenting I think I nailed down a great tasting recipe which is pretty easy to make. I hot water-bath canned mine but it could also be refrigerated until serving.
I figured I'd better blog it, so I can remember how I did it next summer.



Ingredients:

1/3 box of Roma tomatoes (about 6 lbs)
14 big cayenne peppers, sliced with seeds (to make a medium-hot salsa)
3 onions, diced
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
several cloves of garlic, crushed
juice of 2 squeezed limes
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tbsp salt
1/4 cup vinegar

Directions:

Drop the tomatoes a few at a time into a large pot of boiling water. After a minute or so scoop them out and drop them in a pot of cold water. This will loosen the skin and set the color.
Drain, peel, and quarter. I then use a food processor to crush the tomatoes.
Place crushed tomatoes in a large pot on the stove and add remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil.
Spoon into clean, hot canning jars and process in hot water bath taking the proper precautions.


Notes:

I didn't raise enough tomatoes to use this summer so I picked up a box at a local produce stand. I find it easier to work a third of the box at a time so I estimate it by filling the box lid with them.

Add or subtract the peppers for your taste. This will take some experimenting and guessing. My opinion is that the heat in this recipe is around medium range. Some folks might consider it mild or hot. I can say that the taste is really delicious and the heat does not seem to linger.
Jalapenos would also be perfect in it.

I like my salsa chunky, so I don't over work the tomatoes in the food processor. (Be quick on the button.)

It makes about 7 pints per batch. It's pretty in the jar.

Be sure you make plenty. My family is putting a hurtin' on this stuff!