Sunday, October 04, 2009

How to do something with your tomatoes - Post #1 - Salsa edition

Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes – boy, did I have a lot of tomatoes this year. This is a photo of one batch. I think I had about at least this amount times 3. And the funny thing is I’m the only one is the family that eats tomatoes, raw that is, they like them in sauces and stuff. So sauces and stuff is what I made. I made 2 big batches of salsa, my favorite, and a batch of slow cooker tomato sauce, a batch of roasted tomato sauce, tomato soup, bean soup with tomatoes, green tomato salsa and a bunch of tomato sandwiches and salsas for me. I now have a batch of green tomatoes that I’m trying to figure out what to do with – if anyone has any great recipes let me know.

Here is Post #1 in how to do something with tomatoes – salsa edition.

Last year I found this awesome recipe for Salsa with zucchini and lime, which I thought was perfect since I had a crazy amount of zucchinis also. Last year I wished I made more so this year I did, but I’m still nervous about giving any away since I don’t want to run out.

Here is the link to the recipe.

Salsa With Zucchini With a Hint of Lime

8 cups peeled seeded diced tomatoes

olive oil
6 cups
1/2 teaspoon
4 cups diced
3 jalapenos
habaneros, minced
red bell pepper, diced
orange bell pepper, diced
chipotle chiles in adobo, minced
garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon
dried parsley
1 tablespoon
dried oregano
1/3 cup
1 teaspoon
ground black pepper
1/3 cup
light brown sugar
lime, juice and zest of
1 1/2 cups
vinegar, 5% acid
12 ounces
tomato paste
1 tablespoon
fresh basil or fresh cilantro, minced
To peel and seed the tomatoes it’s a pain it the butt. Boil a pot of water and then score an “x” on the bottom of your tomatoes. Place the tomatoes in the boiling water for about 30 seconds, or until you start to see the skins splitting. Scoop them out and place in a sink filled with ice cold water. When they cool off a bit the skin will easily come off. Then cut and remove the stem part and the seeds. Chop and put in a strainer over a bowl to catch the juices.

To prep my zucchini – I scooped out the seeds and mushy middle since my zucchinis were huge and the seeds inside were the side of pumpkin seeds. If you have normal sized zucchini you wouldn’t have to do this. Then cut up and shred in food processor.

Lightly oil the bottom of a large pot and add the zucchini and ½ teaspoon of salt, heat to release juices and reduce the liquid. Add the juice caught from the chopped tomatoes and cook for 10 mins or until most of the liquid is gone.

Add onions, all the peppers and chili`s, garlic, tomatoes, spices, salt, black pepper, sugar, lime juice and zest, vinegar, and paste.

Simmer over medium heat for 30 minutes.

Then you're suppose to add either fresh basil or cilantro – of course I forgot to pick that so since it was past 11pm already I had to grab the flashlight so I could find it in the backyard.

While you are stewing the salsa put on the water in the canning pot and boil.

You can either sterilize the jars in the dishwasher or in the boiling water for 10 mins.

I sterilized the lids using by placing them in a strainer.

Fill into hot sterile jars with hot salsa leaving 1/2 inch head space. Being careful not to leave any salsa on the rims. Wipe jar rims with a clean, damp paper towel. Put on lids and screw on metal bands.
I used fitted cotton gloves under rubber gloves to hold the jars – still hot but you can handle them at least.
It filled 8 pints and a little extra for sampling.

Process for 10 minutes in a hot water bath. Label and store in a dark place. Use with 1 year.
Yummy! The first batch I did I removed the seeds from the hot peppers – it wasn’t super spicy but very yummy. The second batch I kept the seeds in – spicy but not killer. One thing you can’t leave out is the chipotle peppers, they give it a smoky flavour.
I tried to make a green salsa also using green tomatoes but it wasn’t awesome so I’m still looking for a better recipe.
Wow that was a long post :)

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