Santa brought me Rick Bayless's Mexican Everyday this Christmas, and I was so incredibly excited. This was probably the #1 cookbook on my wishlist, and I couldn't wait to start breaking it in. So far I have been very impressed. I love his philosophy of "everyday eating." Basically he discusses the importance of portion control and a well-balanced diet. Plenty of vegetables, good carbs, etc. He also stresses that is important to "feast" every once in a while for special occasions. Most of the recipes are actually pretty healthy, and so far, they have all been very tasty!
The first recipe I'll be sharing with you is his recipe for Rustic Roasted Salsa. One of my favorite things about summer is the abundance of tomatoes and fresh produce. I absolutely love making salsa in the summer, and pretty much have it in my fridge at all times. So I kind of fall out of the habit as the weather gets colder, and the tomatoes go out of season. This is a great alternative to fresh salsa, using good quality canned diced tomatoes, then roasting the garlic and jalapenos to add some extra depth of flavor to the salsa. The result was spicy, smokey, but still fresh. The key is to use good tomatoes. I used Muir Glen Organic Fire Roasted, and they really have great flavor.
This is very simple to throw together, and keeps well when refrigerated. I snacked on this for a few days, then used the rest to make some black bean chili.
Rustic Roasted Tomato Salsa
adapted from Rick Bayless, Mexican Everyday
makes about 2 cups
- 2 fresh jalapeno peppers
- 4 garlic cloves, unpeeled
- 1/2 cup finely chopped white onion
- 1 15-ounce can diced fire-roasted tomatoes in juice
- 1/3 cup (loosely packed) roughly chopped cilantro
- juice of 1/2 lime, or 1 teaspoon cider vinegar
- Salt and Pepper
Meanwhile, rinse the onion in a fine-mesh strainer under cold water. Shake to dry, and set aside.
Stem and peel the jalapenos, and scrape out the seeds and membranes (or leave them if you want the salsa extra spicy)! Peel the garlic, and transfer it to a food processor, along with the jalapenos. Pulse until they are finely chopped, then add the tomatoes (with their juice), and pulse a few more times to make the salsa as smooth or as coarse as you want. Pour the mixture into a medium bowl, and add the onion, cilantro, and lime juice. Stir to combine, and add salt to taste. Cover and refrigerate, or serve immediately.