I have two abilities of which I’m definitely a bit overly proud.
The first is my tree-climbing ability, but that (usually) has nothing to do with food. (We’ll save my rant regarding shaved palm trees for another day.)
The second, and more relevant, is my salsa-making ability. When it comes to this recipe in particular, I’m like an oblivious, proud parent; I’m 85-percent sure that this is the best salsa in the world. Someday, it’ll be famous.
Ok, fine – it won’t be famous. But it is, actually, close to half-decent.
There are two things that make this recipe unique. First, it uses canned tomatoes. I know, I know – sacrilege. Whole, peeled, San Marzano tomatoes, however, give this salsa some much-needed sweetness. Second, it gets its heat from tepin peppers. A buddy turned me on to these little fireballs a few years back, and I’ve used them in this recipe ever since. Yah, they’re hot – but they also impart a really unique flavor upon the finished salsa. They’re worth tracking down.
(On that note: getting your mitts on some tepin can be difficult, especially if you live outside the Southwest. I apologize for that. If you ask reeeaaal nice, however, I’ll send you one of my many bags. I tend to stock up on the stuff.)
Makes a medium-sized bowl
- 1 28-ounce can whole, peeled, San Marzano tomatoes, drained
- 1/2 red onion, rough chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and rough chopped
- juice of 1-2 limes
- 1 jalapeno, stem and seeds removed, rough chopped
- 1 handful cilantro leaves
- 6-8 dried tepin peppers (for medium heat)
- salt & pepper, to taste
- 1 good glug olive oil
- 1 large avocado (optional), peeled and diced
- Combine all ingredients, less the tepin, in a large food processor.
- Add the tepin peppers, crushing them before adding them to the mixture. Be careful – tepin peppers are super hot. If you crush them between your fingers, wash your hands immediately after handling them.
- Pulse the mixture until the salsa is smooth, but still textured.
- (Optional) Before serving, fold in the diced avocado.