Chips and Salsa. It’s a staple where I’m from.
It’s almost always on the menu, regardless of what type of eatery you’re in. And if it’s not listed on the menu, then it arrives free and immediately – usually before a drink order is even taken.
Ah… Chips and salsa are my ultimate snack food. And fresh homemade salsa is so easy to make. Bonus.
Summer is salsa season… but, I decided to start the party early by making a batch of roasted salsa for my Cinco de Mayo dinner.
I love all varieties of salsa, but I find that roasted salsa has a little more depth of flavor to it. It’s all those excellent charred bits that make this type of salsa my favorite.
Now, salsa is a bit subjective to how much spice you want. I prefer a kick in mine, so I used a good amount dried and fresh chilies. I think the ancho brings a good color and flavor to the salsa, so I would definitely recommend it for roasted salsa. If you’re unable to get your hands on any, then just add an extra jalapeño or two.
Roasted Tomato Salsa
(makes about 3 cups)
- 1.5 pounds (680 grams) of fresh tomatoes (any variety, I used salad this time)
- 1 large onion, cut chunky
- 2-5 jalapeños/assorted mixed chilies (you choose, 2 for something mild obviously)
- 1 dried Ancho chili
- 2 dried Chili de Arbol peppers
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 lime
- Olive oil, for drizzling
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Cilantro (optional)
Now, I love cilantro, but unfortunately Mr.Snacks has that strange genetic thing where cilantro tastes like soap. So, when sharing I need to leave it out during the blending stage.
1. Turn oven to grill and place temperature onto the highest setting.
2. While that preheats, chop onion and tomatoes if using larger ones i.e. beefsteak etc. Then place tomatoes, onions, chillies and garlic cloves on a baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Let ingredients grill for 30-45 minutes.
You want burnt edges and skin on everything! The onions might cook quicker than the tomatoes and potentially the jalapeños, so check the oven after 20 minutes. If the onions are charred enough, remove them and place tomatoes and chillies back in the oven for longer.
3. While everything is roasting, put your dried chillies in a small bowl fill it with boiling water. Cover the bowl in cling film and leave the chillies to soak until your oven ingredients are finished. Once everything is charred leave the tray to cool for about 10 minutes.
4. Place roasted ingredients, soaked dried chillies, the juice of one lime and a big handful of cilantro (if using) into a food processor. Pulse until everything is blended to your liking. Add salt and pepper to taste.
If the salsa is too thick, add a few tablespoons of the water left over from the dried chillies to thin it out a bit. The amount of liquid will depend on your tomatoes, so you might need work it differently each time you make the salsa. If you’re happy with the heat then just use either more lime juice or water to thin out until you’ve got the right consistency.
And then you’re ready to dip a chip!
If you’re not as keen to munch it right away, you can store the salsa in the fridge within an airtight container for 3-4 days. Keep in mind the garlic and heat will develop a stronger flavor the longer you leave it to sit.
And there you have it, your go to snack recipe for the summer.
Break out the tortilla chips!