Want to know the secret to making the most delicious salsa on earth? It’s simple: grow yo’ sh*t. You don’t need a garden to grow your own tomatoes, a large container will suffice, and they taste so much better than the impostors at the supermarket. There really is no comparison. Last spring, Sunset Magazine had a great article on “salsa in a pot”, so I tried it out this year. I grew tomatoes, jalapeños, and herbs in large containers, then grew the onions in my raised bed. It’s fun to freeze jars of garden salsa to enjoy during the oh-so-dreary winter months. D-to-the-licious. This has been my simple go-to recipe all summer:
6 large, super ripe garden tomatoes, seeded, chopped coarse
1 large white onion, peeled, chopped coarse
1 or 2 jalapeño peppers, roasted, seeded
2 large cloves of garlic, crushed (I tend to go big here)
1 teaspoon blue agave sweetner
zest +fresh juice of one lime
salt + pepper
My mother, a veteran burn nurse, is not going to be pleased with the above photograph. Sorry, mom! I always roast my jalapeños over an open flame before chopping them up. I like the deep flavor and the charred little bits. My host mom in Mexico used to do this all the time, but she was a pro….so…attempt at your own risk.
Put everything in the food processor, reserving a handful of chopped tomatoes. Process until smooth but chunky (does that make sense?! You know what I mean)…
Then toss in the reserved tomatoes and pulse a few times, depending on how chunky you like it.
Grab a bag of Juanita’s chips (the best, most addictive chips on the planet) and chow down.
This recipe is so simple, but so good! My friend, Catherine, brought it to a BBQ at our house this spring, and I’ve been making (and devouring) it all summer. It tastes like a mojito in a bowl….or on a stick, depending on how you serve it! Everything is to taste, so use this as a guide.
1 pineapple, peeled, cored and cut into chunks
2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
squeezed juice from 1/2 lime
freshly grated ginger to taste
Combine ingredients in a bowl and let it blend for about 30 minutes.
Last summer, my sister-in-law helped me to plant my first garden. I was nervous at first, given my penchant for killing plants, but it didn’t take long for me to convert into a full fledged garden enthusiast. In the fall, we harvested our squash. With our first batch, I made butternut squash ravioli. I had trouble deciding what to do with the rest, so I stored it in a dry, cool place while I waited for the right recipe to come along. And I’m glad that I did. For Christmas, my thoughtful friend, Jamie, gifted me The Whole Foods Market Cookbook. Even my carnivorous husband enjoyed this dish as it is simple, but packed with flavor! Buen provecho…
ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH with PASTA – Whole Foods Market Cookbook
4 cups butternut squash (approximately 1 medium squash)
1 1/2 cups chopped onion (approximately 1 medium onion)
3 cloves minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon red chili flake (use more if you like heat)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons salt
1 pound pasta (farfalle, penne, gemilli, etc)
1/2 cup minced flat leaf parsley
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
PREHEAT oven to 375.* PEEL butternut squash with a vegetable peeler. CUT the squash in half with a heavy knife, lengthwise. SCOOP out the seeds and discard. DICE the squash into 1 inch cubes, yielding 4 cups.* COMBINE squash with onion, garlic, chili flake, olive oil, lemon juice, and 2 tsp salt in a large mixing bowl. ROAST mixture in a roasting pan for 45 minutes, or until golden brown, shaking it up occasionally.
BOIL water with 1 tablespoon of salt in a large pot. COOK pasta for 8-10 minutes until it is al dente. DRAIN pasta and place in large mixing bowl. MIX in the cooked squash, parsley, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.*
*notes: I prefer to roast squash at 450 degrees for 25-35 minutes, heating the oil in the pan for a few minutes first. I also prefer the squash no bigger than 3/4 inch. When mixing, I used less pasta and more veggies.
Is there anything better than pancakes on a Saturday morning? We think not. This recipe from Emeril is one of our favorites. Thanks, mom, for passing this little gem along. Enjoy….
Ingredients (serves 2-3 people as a main course):
1 cup flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1 pint blueberries
SIFT flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. WHISK buttermilk, egg, butter. ADD dry ingredients to wet. FOLD in the lemon zest & allow to sit for ten minutes. POUR batter on to a skillet over medium low heat, and sprinkle with blueberries. COOK for about two minutes, until big bubbles form, then flip. NOTE: If fresh blueberries are not available, use frozen. Rinse until water no longer turns blue to prevent bleeding.