How to Make Salsa the Authentic Mexican Way
If you want to know how to make salsa, you will be pleased to know that it is very easy to do. Also, homemade salsa tastes delicious. It is so much fresher tasting than store-bought salsa and you can choose all the ingredients that go into it, from the variety of tomatoes to the herbs and spices. There are two main types of salsa – salsa made with raw tomatoes and salsa made with cooked tomatoes.
Cooked salsa is good with dishes like enchiladas and this type of salsa is popular in the Sonora region of Mexico. Raw salsa is also very popular and tastes really fresh. This type of salsa is good with fish and meat, as well as salads or using as a dip.
Choosing Your Ingredients
Roma tomatoes are one of the best types to use for making salsa because they have a low water content, thick, meaty walls and a great flavor. Avoid using any over-ripe or bruised tomatoes when making salsa. Use five to seven tomatoes if you want to make four cups of salsa.
You can use any kind of chili peppers you like in your salsa. To remove the skin, you can roast the chilies directly over a gas stove burner. When the skin is black all over, put the chili in a paper bag for a few minutes. The skin will then rub off easily.
Take out the ribs, stem, and chop the chili. If you want to make a mild salsa, use one jalapeno. Double or triple this for a medium salsa, or use one Serrano chili instead. If you like a little more heat, use four or five jalapenos or if you like really hot salsa you can use a habanero pepper.
As for the seasoning, you can either make your own or use a salsa mix. You can use a food processor to finely dice your seasonings and the other salsa ingredients. You might like to use chili peppers, onions, garlic, lime juice or lemon juice, tomato paste, pepper, salt, sugar, oregano or cumin. You can pick and choose which seasonings to use or you can follow a salsa recipe.
How to Prepare the Tomatoes
The easiest way to take the skins off your tomatoes is to plunge the tomatoes into boiling water for forty to sixty seconds and then plunge them into ice water. The skins will slide off easily. You can make salsa leaving the skins on but they go tough so it is far better to remove them. Cut the skinless tomatoes in half, and then squeeze the halves. Use a spoon or your finger to scoop out the tomato seeds, and then chop the tomatoes into cubes.
Combine the tomatoes and chili pepper with a finely diced onion and some fresh cilantro. You can pull your fingers up the stems of the cilantro to remove the leaves easily, and then you can chop them up.
Add a tablespoon of lime juice, a tablespoon of lemon juice or a teaspoon and a half of white vinegar to the mixture. Stir in six finely chopped garlic cloves and add about a teaspoon of salt. If you are going to be serving the salsa with something that is already salty, like tortilla chips, you might want to add less salt.
Learning how to make salsa is all about tasting as you go. Perhaps you want to add more lime juice or more garlic. Make the necessary adjustments until the salsa tastes good, and then keep it for up to a few days in the refrigerator.
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