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Guest Post: Basic Tomato Salsa

Hi, everyone!  Cara, the Friendly Frugalista here, and I wanted to let you know I’m having a Harvest Blessings event this week.   I have changed the name of my blog to Totally Temberton (be sure to check it out!), and it’s even more awesome than before.  Read on for my first Harvest Blessing…Basic Tomato Salsa.

Ingredients:

This isn’t so much a recipe as a suggestion. These are the ingredients that my husband and I use, but we don’t have a specific recipe. We just slice ‘n dice, add seasonings as desired, and enjoy!  After testing our results many times, we’ve come up with a basic version that works well for us.  You may prefer more or less of certain ingredients; make it the way YOU like it. One caveat — we don’t add heat because I can’t tolerate it.  If just teeny bit of hot spice hits my throat, I cough A LOT.  So, it’s better for me to avoid the risk. But, if you need a little spice in your life, try jalapeno or chili peppers.

We make our salsa by placing the following ingredients in a large bowl:

  1. Dice tomatoes into small chunks (approximately 2 cups total); if desired, peel and core the tomatoes first. (The salsa is better without the seeds).
  2. Chop onion into tiny slivers (approximately 1/3 cup total).
  3. Remove the leaves from several sprigs of cilantro and chop the leaves (approximately 1/4 cup total).
  4. Press one clove of garlic in a garlic press, or slice it very fine with a knife.
  5. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze out a little juice from one of the halves (one half of a lemon can be used for several batches of salsa); or use one teaspoon of bottled juice.
  6. Cut the lime in half and squeeze out the juice from one of the halves (use all of the juice from one half); or use one tablespoon of bottled juice.
  7. Add approximately 1/4 cup of olive oil.
  8. Add approximately 1 tablespoon of red cooking wine.
  9. Add pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder (approximately 1 teaspoon of each), as desired; add salt to taste on individual servings. (I use lots of salt, but my husband uses none, so I don’t put salt in the entire mixture).
  10. Mix all ingredients; once mixed, the salsa is ready to serve.

While salsa is generally consumed with tortilla chips (and we do often use it that way), we also use it as a “condiment” for other dishes.   One of my favorite uses for this salsa is to add it to pasta along with shredded Parmesan (or Italian blend) cheese.  It works well with nearly any type of pasta and makes a simple, tasty meal. I also use it for easy “enchiladas” – I place four corn tortillas in a circle on a plate and top it with shredded cheese and a few spoonfuls of salsa, then microwave it for about 90 seconds. I then separate and roll the individual tortillas. It’s another simple, tasty meal! My husband likes to add it to his eggs. It also makes a great topper for black beans (which we bake in the oven in our ceramic bean pot) and bean soups. I suppose it would compliment just about anything that goes well with tomatoes.  If you find a favorite use for this, please tell me about it! :o)