As the hint of fall slowly creeps into the air here in Denver, I spent part of this past weekend enjoying the dwindling summer days at a fantastic salsa party.
Yes, that’s right. A friend decided to plan a birthday in the park and have everyone bring along their own homemade salsa.
I have to say that it was a smashing success and we all had a great time sampling a huge variety of salsas from sweet to spicy, and everything in between.
So, in order to inspire you to make your own salsa creation, I thought I would offer up three of my favorite recipes.
And heck, you don’t even need chips. Salsa is an amazing way to use late summer fruits and vegetables, and makes a fresh and healthy topping for chicken, fish, or even eggs.
Three spectacular salsa recipes ….
Grilled Tomato Salsa:
6-8 Roma tomatoes
3 garlic cloves, peeled
1 red onion, peeled and quartered
1 tbsp adobo sauce (sauce available in canned chipotles)
2 tbsp fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
Juice of one lime, freshly squeezed
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the grill to medium high heat.
On a tray, drizzle tomatoes, ½ of the onion, garlic, and jalapeños with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Transfer these veggies onto the grill and cook, turning occasionally, until they are lightly charred, about 8-10 minutes (you can grill the garlic and onions on aluminum foil if you do not have a grilling basket).
Allow the vegetables to cool slightly. When they have cooled, slice the jalapeños in half and remove the seeds. Transfer all of the grilled veggies plus the other half of the onion to a food processor, add the adobo sauce, lime juice and cilantro, and pulse until you reach your desired consistency.
You can serve immediately, or refrigerate overnight.
Peach Mint Salsa:
4-6 ripe peaches (depending on size), peeled and diced
2 tbsp red onion, finely diced
Juice of two limes, freshly squeezed
2 tsp honey
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 tbsp fresh jalapeño (or more to taste), minced
1 small clove of garlic, finely minced
1 tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped
Combine all ingredients and refrigerate until serving. Great with chips, or as a topping for grilled chicken or salmon.
(from Rachael Ray)
3 cups watermelon, cut into small dice
1 cucumber, seeded and cut into small dice
2 jalapeño peppers, minced
1 small red onion, cut into small dice
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup mint, chopped
Zest and juice of 2 limes
Salt and pepper
Combine the watermelon, cucumber, jalapeños, red onion, cilantro, mint, lime zest and juice in a serving dish. Season with salt just before you serve to keep the watermelon from extracting its juice.
Serve with whole grain tortilla chips or over steak, chicken or fish.
And, of course, a big glass of iced Wu-Long Tea is the perfect drink to accompany your salsa creations.