My garden bonanza culminated last week in a couple of days of creating sauces and salsas. I had peppers, tomatoes, onions and tomatillos to work with. I created a garden salsa with fresh tomatoes, onions and peppers. Next came a verdant green tomatillo salsa and finally, a hot chile barbecue sauce. Here are the recipes for all three sauces. I am already planning a bigger garden for next year so I can make more of these delicious sauces and salsas!
#1) Tomato and Pepper Salsa
We enjoyed the salsa with chips and on tacos.
- 10 lbs tomatoes
- 1 cups fresh cilantro
- 1 large onions
- 6 garlic cloves
- 5 medium jalapeños
- 2 Habanero or scotch bonnet peppers, to taste
- 1 cup chopped green peppers
- 1 tablespoons cumin
- ⅛ cup salt
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- Juice of 3 limes
- Peel and chop tomatoes. You can use a food processor to make it easier, but leave large pieces.
- Chop the cilantro, onion, garlic and add to tomatoes in a 10 quart stock pot.
- Chop jalapeños and habanero (or scotch bonnet) peppers) and put in the stock pot. You can core and seed them for less heat. I recommend wearing disposable gloves and a mask or tying a dish cloth around your mouth and nose. Wash your hands with hot soapy water after working with the peppers and avoid touching your face or eyes.
- Add cumin, salt and vinegar to the stock pot and stir to mix.
- Bring to a boil and lower temperature. Keep at a low boil for 2-3 hours or until the volume is reduced by half.
- Cool the cooked salsa completely before putting it in freezer bags or containers.
#2) Tomatillo Salsa
Next up was the tomatillo salsa. Tomatillos don’t have a lot of flavor so I roasted poblano peppers on the grill and added them for flavor. Jalapeños and serrano peppers from the garden added the heat. This sauce was great on my chilaquiles and fish tacos.
- ½ pound tomatillos, husks removed and washed, chopped
- 3 Poblano chilies, skins charred and removed, seeded and deveined
- 3 Tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 1 small onion, chopped
- Salt to taste
- Add the chopped tomatillos to boiling water and cook until the tomatillos are soft. Drain off the excess water but reserve it for use later. Place the poblano peppers on a hot grill and char the skin until black and blistered. Remove from heat and immediately place the hot peppers in a plastic bag and allow them to steam. When cool, open the bag and peel the skin off the peppers. Cut one side of the pepper open and scrape out the seeds and membrane. Chop the poblanos and add to a food processor or blender with the remaining ingredients. Blend until mostly smooth but leave it a little chunky. Add salt add desired. If the salsa is too thick add some of the tomatillo cooking water to thin it.
#3) Hot Chili BBQ Sauce
- 8 lb. fresh tomatoes, peeled & chopped
- 2 c. chopped onions
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 3 chopped and seeded jalapeños
- 1-2 habanero or scotch bonnet peppers (omit if you don't like it spicy)
- 1 TBS ground cumin
- 2 TBS chili powder
- 3 TBS Worcestershire sauce
- ¼ c. fresh lime juice
- 1 TBS salt
- Wash and core the tomatoes. Quarter and place in a heavy stock pot. Boil the tomatoes until the water is all released. Strain the peels and seeds out by pouring through a mesh strainer and scraping with a spatula or wooden spoon. Work in small batches and be careful not to splash yourself with hot tomatoes.
- Discard the tomato pulp and pour the liquid back into the stock pot. Core and seed the peppers wearing disposable gloves and a mask or a dish towel tied around your nose and mouth if sensitive to capsaicin. Add the remaining ingredients for the sauce and simmer over low heat for 1½ to 2 hours or until desired thickness. Stir occasionally. Taste frequently and add spices as needed.
- Cool the sauce and place in a blender or food processor. Pulse until desired consistency. Place in freezer jars or bags.