Salsa is a household staple, and my family's recipe, perfected by my mom over the years, stands out for its simplicity and year-round deliciousness.
Culture and Tradition
Salsa, the embodiment of culture and tradition, it is more than a mere condiment or topping for tacos. It is a story woven into the fabric of generations. Living in the heart of Washington state, means access to fresh tomatoes is a seasonal delight where nature paints landscapes that shift with the seasons. For the rest of the year, we have to bridge the gap between nostalgia and innovation, a treasure born from the fusion of ancestral flavors with modern convenience, with the use of canned tomatoes. My mom’s go-to secret is a trip to the pantry or grocery store, crafting this easy homemade salsa recipe, that is reminiscent of that yummy Mexican restaurant-style salsa we all love so much.
For centuries, salsa has been an integral part of Latin American cuisine, a vibrant mixture of fresh tomatoes, peppers, herbs, and spices, a reflection of the tapestry of Latin American recipes. After my family found it's way to Washington, our salsa narrative took a unique twist, without access to fresh tomatoes year-round, the plucking of ripe tomatoes became the gentle pop of the canned tomato jar being opened.
From a humble pantry staple, my mom created the best salsa recipe we could enjoy year round. Unlike making salsa and canning it to enjoy in the winter, my Mom would mingle fresh ingredients with the canned tomatoes to create a fresh salsa recipe that could be served year-round with ease. Whether you are canning your tomatoes in the most bountiful summer months, or picking up the best canned san marzano tomatoes available, you can enjoy the salsa from your favorite Mexican restaurant in your own home.
The Secret Ingredient
Amidst the variety of herbs, is a modest but indispensable herb that takes center stage as the secret ingredient to my Mom's Table Salsa recipe, mint. An unexpected addition to traditional salsa recipes, the mint's crisp, cooling note weaves with the flavors, elevating this easy homemade salsa recipe to new heights. It is an ingredient that is not to be missed.
Thanks to my Mom's creative culinary spirit, I have this wonderful recipe to utilize when I need to get a delicious salsa on the table with ease. Shared experience that transcends generations, fostering a bond through a family recipe. One day my son will make this recipe and place it on his table celebrating the tradition and embodiment of our family's story told through food.
As I stand at the crossroads of tradition and modernity, holding this cherished family recipe, I invite you on a flavorful expedition—a journey that transcends geographical boundaries and invites you to savor the essence of Pacific Northwest meets Mexican heritage. Together, let us celebrate the simplicity of canned tomatoes, the vibrancy of fresh cilantro, and the subtle charm of mint, painting a canvas of flavors and fostering the connection to culinary heritage.
Now it's time to grab your blender or food processor and whip up this great recipe my Mom has shared. If this is your first time making homemade salsa this is a great recipe to start with, since you only roast the peppers. For the best flavor and natural taste of the ingredients, let the salsa rest in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours prior to serving.
Serve this salsa, with a variety of Mexican recipes, or just grab that bag of tortilla chips and begin to dip, a game day classic. I love using this in the morning over my huevos rancheros, avocado toast, or eggs. Your taste buds will thank you next time you make this amazing salsa recipe.
- Can of tomatoes
- Can of roasted tomatoes with chiles
- Fresh Jalapenos or serrano peppers
- Garlic cloves
- Fresh or dried mint
- Mexican oregano
- Sea salt
- Pinch of sugar
- Fresh Lime Juice
- White onion or red onions
See recipe card for quantities.
- Take your jalapenos or serrano peppers and roast them till the outside skin has black blisters of char. Place the peppers on the open flame on your gas stove, utilize a culinary torch to blister the pepper skin, place the peppers in a hot dry cast iron skillet, or place the pepper on a baking sheet and place them under the broiler, turning the peppers as they blister.
- In a blender, combine canned tomatoes, jalapeños, garlic, mint, cumin, oregano, salt, sugar, lime juice, cilantro stems, and ¼ cup white onion. Blend until well combined.
- In a serving bowl, mix the remaining ¼ cup white onion and chopped cilantro leaves.
- Pour the blended salsa over the cilantro and onion mixture. Stir well and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Summertime: Fresh tomatoes can be used in place of canned tomatoes during tomato season for a different texture.
- Fresh mint: Substitute fresh mint for dried by tripling the amount.
- Spice level: Adjust the spice level by varying the quantity of jalapeños or serrano peppers. For a mild salsa, remove the stems and seeds from your peppers prior to adding them into the blender. For a spicy salsa, use additional peppers, adding a little bit at a time, until desired spice level is created. Note: your salsa roja will get spicer as it sits in the fridge.
- Mango Salsa: Add diced mangoes at the end with the cilantro and onion for a fruity twist.
- Black Bean Corn Salsa: After salsa has been made you can mix in black beans and corn kernels for added texture.
- Pineapple Salsa: Add diced pineapple at the end with the cilantro and onion for some tropical flavor.
- Blender or food processor
- Gas stove or oven
- Sheet pan or cast iron skillet
Store the salsa in a mason jar with tight-fitting lid or any airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Allowing the flavors to meld for a few hours or overnight significantly enhances the salsa's taste.
Yes, control the heat by removing the seeds and veins from the inside of the pepper. You can also change the spiciness level by adding or reducing the quantity of jalapeños or serrano peppers.
Certainly! Swap canned tomatoes with fresh ones during the tomato season for a different texture.
It stays fresh for up to a week when properly stored in the refrigerator.
Mom's Homemade Easy Salsa - The Best Blender Recipe
- 1 Blender, stove top
- 1 15 ounce can of tomatoes
- 1 10 ounce can of roasted tomatoes with chiles
- 1 clove garlic
- ¼ teaspoon dried mint or 1 tablespoon fresh
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- ¼ teaspoon Mexican oregano
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon sugar
- 1 lime juice only
- 1 bunch cilantro finely chop leaves
- ½ cup white onion finely diced
- 1 or 2 jalapeños roasted
- In a blender, add the tomatoes, garlic, mint, cumin, oregano, salt, sugar, lime juice, cilantro stems, and ¼ cup white onion. Blend until combined.
- In a serving bowl, add ¼ cup white onion and remaining chopped cilantro leaves. Pour salsa over cilantro and onion, and mix well.
- Chill until ready to serve.
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- Ensure the canned goods are not damaged or expired before use.
- Refrigerate the salsa promptly after preparation.
- Use clean utensils and containers to avoid contamination.