Fall Harvest Salsa

by jane arie baldwin

Oh what to do with the bounty of vegetables flowing from the gardens and farmer’s markets right now?

In the States, salsa replaced ketchup 20 years ago as the go-to condiment.  The good news is that it’s a lot easier to make than ketchup and you can’t beat the freshness of homemade handmade salsa.  Add some hot peppers, cilantro and citrus to the tomatoes, onions and carrots that are staring at you from your countertop or crisper bin and you will taste that fall has arrived.

FALL HARVEST SALSA

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

12 ounce or medium sized jar, preferable with a wide mouth

6-8 super ripe tomatoes, sliced in half

1 large white or red onion, sliced in half

1 red bell pepper, halved and seeded (optional)

4-6 cloves garlic

2-4 hot peppers chopped – Serrano or Jalapeno

1 carrot, skinned and chopped

1 bunch fresh cilantro leaves

2 teaspoons vinegar or citrus juice –

Either lemon or lime, OR white or cider vinegar

Salt

Olive Oil

ROAST:

Place tomato halves, onion halves, red bell pepper, and garlic cloves on a cookie sheet.  Brush with olive oil and salt. Broil at 500˚F 10-15 minutes on lower rack. Then flip and roast another 10 minutes on top rack.  Remove and let cool.  Tomatoes will loose a lot of juice in the broiling process. That is okay.  You need them too not be as juicy or your salsa will be too runny.

PROCESS:

Place your roasted garlic and veggies in the food processor with hot peppers of your choice, the carrot, a bunch of cilantro leaves to your liking and a tablespoon of olive oil.  Pulse the salsa for about 5-10 seconds.  You can choose how smooth or chunky you want it to be but don’t puree it.  The salsa needs a little bit of texture to keep it interesting.

JAR:

Pour your salsa in a wide mouth jar.  Add a citrus or vinegar of your choice and salt to taste.

VOILA!

This salsa can be put on anything from chips to salads and soups to breakfast eggs.  Your salsa will keep for about 2 weeks in your refrigerator. So don’t save it for a rainy day. Make more!  It’s a great way to get your veggies and a little bit of spicy heat you need for the cold weather.