Salsa, not the dance, the dip!

A few years ago my husband was sitting on the couch eating potato chips with sour cream and onion dip.  Yum, but artery clogging too.  It was a Saturday and he was on the second bag of potato chips and the 2nd or 3rd carton of Helleva Good Chip Dip.  That is one extremely good dip!  I used to feel a little on the naughty side for buying a dip with a bad word in it.  lol   I’m sure he was watching some late night show, but I was kind of grossed  out.  I grew up with a mom that could eat a 1 pound bag of Lays potato chips with a 16 ounce container of chip dip in one sitting.  I didn’t want my husband to be like that.  He has always had borderline high blood pressure and I thought if he keeps eating these things like this I will no longer have a husband.

The following Friday night I went to the local Publex (I just love Publex) and looked for a fresh salsa.  We love spicy foods in this house and Chris loves salsa so perfect switch.  He wouldn’t even notice as long as he has a snack on the weekends.  I found a “fresh” salsa in the produce department and it was awesome!  Not to hot or mild, perfect ratio of jalapenos to tomatoes ratio.   It wasn’t all that salty. It was not sweet.  It was the perfect salsa.  The price wasn’t that bad the 16 ounce cartons were $2 each.  Double the price of the chip dip, but I wanted to try this.

That Saturday, Chris went looking for his chips and dip and found tortilla chips and salsa.  He shrugged as he closed the fridge and sat in front of the TV in the living room and ate.  Sunday afternoon comes around and he is putting the salsa back in the fridge, he says “can we buy salsa next week too?”  That was the beginning of a long and beautiful relationship with salsa.

Eventually the price of salsa started rising and I could see that even though he felt better when eating salsa and chips the price was going to become a problem.  I thought I can make salsa, well, maybe I can make it.  The last time I tried it, the taste was not so good.  The poor man was such a trooper as I tried this recipe and that recipe.  He ate really hot, boring, salty, too much lemon juice, too much lime juice, too large pieces of fresh tomato, hot sauce added, and the list can go on forever. But one day as he hesitantly picked up the bowl and started to put a chip in it, I looked on hesitantly thinking please God, please let this be the one…..IT WAS!!!!!  I had finally made the perfect for us salsa!  Good timing too, because I don’t think he could have handled another trial salsa.

Now I make a lot of salsa and sometimes I get burned out of making it, but I think about the alternative and his heart and nope I go make the salsa.  This recipe for the salsa is something I experimented with because I was so determined.  Every time I would try some recipe it came out horrible. I figured I could do it better on my own.

All ingredients, didn’t realize how messy my counter was!

Cilantro!  Just cut the stems off about where the rubber band is and then coarsely chop 

Jalapeno with the top cut off

Cut right down the middle.  Remove seeds if you prefer a milder  salsa

Sweet onion, remove outer skin and cut in half and quarter, then quarter again

Garlic, remover outer skin and quarter

put everything in a food processor .  I love my KitchenAid!  

See how finely chopped?  Awesome!

dice into small chunks

4 cans of diced tomatoes, cilantro, onion, garlic mix, with diced tomatoes and Kosher salt

1 lemon cut in half

squeeze 1/2 of the lemon or just use lemon juice/lime juice to taste

finished product. 

Chris’ favorite salsa

2 large (28oz) cans of diced Tomatoes
1 medium sweet onion,
1 lg Jalapeno, I cut mine in half and chop into pieces.  You can remove the seeds if you like a more mild salsa
1 whole clove of garlic,
1 bunch of cilantro,
1 lg. fresh Tomato, diced small
sea salt or Kosher salt
The juice from half of a small lemon or 1 tablespoon of lemon juice

1.  Open cans of diced tomatoes and place into a large bowl.  Then wash cans and throw into the recycling bin. That is what I do. You can just throw them away if you want.

2.   After washing the cilantro and drying it, cut off the stems.  Disgard, then with a knife cut the bunch into smaller pieces and place into a food processor.  Take the sweet onion, slice in half and then quarters, and then quarter again and place into food processor.  Take the Jalapeno and cut the garlic into quarters and place into the food processor.  Pulse until teeny tiny pieces.  Scrape out of food processor and add to bowl with canned diced tomatoes.  Put the diced tomato bowl with diced tomatoes.  Add lemon juice and stir thoroughly.  Now add salt to taste.  Stir again to let the salt permeate the salsa.

3.  Place bowl with salsa into the refrigerator for 20 minutes or more to cool down and for flavors to mingle.   

Serve with Tortilla chips.  I still can’t quite get him to eat baked chips, but baby steps.

One thing I want to say about using the food processor, if you layer the ingredients in the same order as I have said to do, you will have finely chopped cilantro.  If you don’t and place the cilantro on top, it just doesn’t get as fine.  It actually leaves larger chunks of stem and such.

This makes a huge amount of salsa.  You can half this recipe for a smaller amount.  Chris eats this whole thing in one weekend.

Now just so you know as with every recipe I write about you can make it your own,  Don’t like even a tiny bit of heat?  Don’t add the Jalapeno, or use smaller ones with the seeds removed.  Some people hate the taste of cilantro.  We love it, but research what other herbs and spices would work and substitute.  Use more or less garlic for your taste buds.  If Tomatoes are really expensive don’t use a fresh one.  Experiment with flavors to make this your own Creative Living recipe!


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