Thursday, April 11, 2013

You CAN do it! How to make and can Salsa!

I was asked about my salsa yesterday. I have been making salsa for years. It is something I started doing by myself just because tomatoes and peppers were something that I could grow successfully. haha
Since then, my canning and gardening expertise have grown quite a bit.
I love making lacto-fermented salsa too, but this is my old standby. I make it every year. But, I can tell you each year it is a bit different...  it's not exact, it varies. Some years it is spicier than others.
So in the best way possible, I'm going to share my method to canning Salsa.

Main ingredients:

Peppers- you gotta have peppers and whatever kind you like!
       I used about 3 handfuls, I cut off the stem and tossed them in the food processor... seeds and all!
Onion- I chopped one HUGE onion, maybe 2. I love onion!
Garlic- 3-4 cloves chopped up in the processor
Cilantro- You need this! Toss this into your processor as well... about 4 sprigs or more if you like!
After I chop all this up and put it into my stock pot, I have about 1/3 of the pot filled with peppers and onions. This is a pretty good ratio.
Garlic- 3-4 cloves chopped up in the processor
2 parts tomato: 1 part peppers and onions

Now, begin adding your Tomatoes. I take my tomatoes and cut off any blemish and cut off  the stem. Quarter them and toss them in the food processor for a rough chop.
I use anywhere from 20-30 tomatoes. And yes, I use the skins. Some people don't.

The stock pot is about full! This cooks down some, so it's ok that it is this full right now!

Next you need to add :
1/3 cup vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
4-5 Tablespoons of Salt
Black Pepper to taste

Stir and let this simmer for a half hour... if your salsa is a bit too runny, you can add a can of tomato paste or some tomato powder.

Taste your salsa.
Is it flavorful?
If not, add a little onion powder or garlic powder or both! A couple of Tablespoons would be great!
Is it spicy enough? If not, add a little cayenne pepper, or horseradish! Mmmm
Is it too sweet? Splash a little lemon juice in.

You want this GOOD AND HOT! So after about 30 min of cooking, have your jars clean and have your caps simmering in hot water as well as your hot water bath canner with boiling water inside.

Fill up your jars, leaving an inch space at the top. Assemble your lids and rings.
Place jars in canner and process for 15 minutes.

Make sure you have plenty of tortilla chips ready for snacking, because if you're like me, you will dig in as soon as it's cool!



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