Monday, October 20, 2008

The Great Salsa Book, by Mark Miller; Golden Tomato, Ginger, and Chipotle Salsa

It's time to confess something (confession being good for the soul): I'm a salsa addict. I put obscene amounts of salsa on anything that will stay moderately still long enough for me to pour. Long before Chefly Husband became either chefly or husbandish, he bought The Great Salsa Book, by Mark Miller (copyright 1994); it gave us our first forays into making our own salsa, instead of eating heat-pasteurized commercial stuffs. One of our early and perennial favorites, particularly suited to the end of the tomato season:
Golden Tomato, Ginger, and Chipotle Salsa

3 yellow tomatoes (about 1 pound), roughly chopped
1 chipotle chile en adobo
1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
1 teaspoon roasted garlic
1 tablespoon Coyote Cocina Howlin' Hot Sauce or other Scotch bonnet chile sauce
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt

In a food processor or blender, purée 2 of the tomatoes, the chipotle chile, and ginger. Add the remaining tomato and all of the other ingredients and pulse just enough to create a roughly blended mixture. Be sure to leave the salsa somewhat chunky.

Variation: Substitute 1 additional teaspoon Howlin' Hot Sauce or other yellow Scotch bonnet sauce or 1 teaspoon habanero chile sauce for the chipotle chile.
Serving suggestions: With grilled tuna, swordfish, pork, or duck.
Yield: About 2 cups.
Heat: 7.

Back in the day, we had the hardest time figuring out what the hell to do about getting chipotle in adobo. It's easier now -- heck, "Chipotle" is the name of a chain restaurant -- but if you've never used it in cooking before, here's what you need to do:

Go to the Hispanic/Latino/TexMex aisle in your supermarket. Look for a small can -- a bit larger than a tomato paste can. You'll get chipotles (smoked jalepenos) in a spicy sauce (adobo). When you take out one whole smoked chile, you'll have some thick dark smokey sauce clinging to it. Ta da! You've a chipotle en adobo. If you're going to use the rest of the can of chipotles within the week, put it in a glass dish, cover it in plastic, and stash it in the fridge. (Ask me about my chipotle/tequila/chicken soup recipe, a favorite for using up leftover chipotle en adobo.) Otherwise, put it in a freezer-safe zip-top bag, and freeze. The stuff is great, and lasts for a long time.

When Chefly Husband and I used it in the past, we paired it with fish -- the meaty fishes recommended in the recipe. So. Damned. Tasty.

Looking forward to a week of salsas, and might cap it off with Chefly Husband's own Quick Salsa recipe, if there's interest.

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