I’d like to introduce Laurie Bullock from Westminster, Maryland. She’s got a guest post for me today of her aunt’s salsa recipe. I don’t know about you but any recipe labeled “My Aunt’s Recipe” or “My Grandmother’s Recipe,” regardless what it is, I want to try it. These folks learned to cook before all the labor saving processed food was available and it’s time we went back to real food.
I don’t mean to be preachy but just look around and see what so many folks look like today and I can’t believe it’s just because they don’t know how to put a fork down. The food we buy is different from what our parents and grandparents ate. I hate the “organic” label but we need to get back to food that is grown in healthy soil without all the chemical fertilizers and pesticides.
Laurie and her husband Gaven run a large landscaping supply yard in Westminster and another one in Hanover, PA., so if you like buying from people like us who can cook and you’re in the area, please stop by and tell them Maureen sent you with fond greetings.
Here’s Laurie’s Salsa Recipe post:
Thanks, Maureen, it’s lovely to be able to share my recipe with your readers. I know they’re going to love this as much as my family does. The last of the tomatoes are coming in now so there’s no excuse for not putting up some of this salsa.
If you’ve never canned anything, this is a great time to begin with this delicious salsa to enjoy over the winter and give out at Christmas. There are also many delicious recipes for creating fresh salsa to enjoy right away but this recipe lets us enjoy those beautiful tomatoes all year round.
Adjust the Ratio of Sweet to Hot Peppers for Varying Heat
A multitude of recipes offer varying degrees of heat, by adjusting the ratio of sweet peppers to hot peppers. I prefer recipes which offer sweetness, by adding sugar or fruit to the recipe. Other variants include the herbs and spices preferred, such as cilantro, oregano, basil, cumin, even cinnamon and cloves.
Be Careful With the Canning Process
One must be careful with the canning process to ensure there is a good, safe seal on your jars. The ratio of ingredients must not be altered greatly as there are guidelines to protect the food from spoilage by adding either vinegar or lemon or lime juice to increase the acidity of the salsa which will prevent spoilage. Botulism is deadly but rare, but you certainly don’t want to be giving it out at Christmas! Be sure to check with your local extension service for guidelines on canning and preservation.
The Salsa Recipe
This recipe was shared by my aunt who has been making it many years. It allows for subtle variations in the hotness, and I like the addition of sugar for a hint of sweet. I have made it several years now, and it is a hit. You are cautioned not to change the amounts of any ingredients, only mix up the peppers to the required amount with your preference for higher heat by using more hot peppers than sweet peppers for more heat, if desired.
- 3 quarts (10-12 cups) tomatoes, blanched, peeled, seeded and chopped. Romas work best but any tomato will do. (do not use overripe or damaged fruit for preserving)
- 5 cups peppers - use a combination of bell peppers/capsicum, banana peppers and jalapeno depending upon how hot you like your salsa.
- 3 large onions - chopped
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- ¾ tsp salt
- ¼ c sugar
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 6 oz tomato paste (you can use more if you like your salsa thicker)
- Cook the tomatoes over medium heat in a large sauce pot to reduce the liquid While that slowly boils, chop the other ingredients.
- Add the vinegar and seasonings, followed by the onions, peppers, and garlic. Stir often to prevent scalding and cook down about an hour or more, until liquid is reduced.
- Add tomato paste to thicken consistency. More can be added if necessary. Cook a little longer until the consistence looks just right for you.
- Sterilize jars, lids, and rings in dish washer or in pot of boiling water. Remove with sterile tongs.
- Ladle salsa into prepared sterile jars, leaving at least ¼? space at top. (I use 6 – 8 – 12 oz. jars.)
- Wipe edges clean with damp clean paper towel for a good seal.
- Place new, unused sterile lids on the jars, secure with sterile rings, and place into hot water bath canner.
- Process 20 minutes, then remove to cool overnight on a clean tea towel.
- As it cools, you will hear the ping as the lids begin to seal.
- In the morning, check the seal. It should have sucked down onto the jar, and not have any give, or popping sound as you press on the center.
- If any jars have not sealed properly, they can either be re-heated and re-sealed or refrigerated for current use.
Enjoy the fresh taste of summer even in the depth of winter by canning fresh garden produce now!
I so agree about recipes that come from our families – to be tried and treasured! I love the look of your blog and glad I found you through your comment on my Guest Post with Uru. I’ll be looking around here later! 🙂
Lovely to meet you, Sally! Thanks so much for stopping by. I sent your gate photo to my husband and said, “Did you have a sign on your place like this when you went to uni?” He said, “I should have!”
Lea An says
As far as I’m concerned you can preach all you’d like. And consider me the choir. I’m amazed at the line of cars all day, every day that I see at the fast food chains, and the processed food piled high in shopping carts. Anyway…this salsa looks great. I can salsa every fall. This recipe is much simpler than what I’ve been using. Must try a batch this year.
I’ll get back on my soapbox then! Thanks for stopping by Lea An!
Tomotoes are for the picking here now. I’ve been thinking homemade salsa would be a great way to use them up. Just needed a good recipe – and here it is! Thanks for sharing Laurie, and of course Maureen 🙂
Laurie Bullock says
You’re welcome Eileen!
I love a great salsa especially for happy hour drinks and your recipe looks delicious although I prefer hot/spicy to sweet.
Laurie Bullock says
Thanks, you can adjust this to meet your tastes by substituting more hot peppers for the sweet ones! 🙂
Laura (Tutti Dolci) says
Homemade salsa is the best! Love the hot pepper addition.
Good guest post. When I make salsa I usually make fresh, but I should start canning – that way I won’t have to buy the commercial stuff (although some of it’s quite good). I think the main difference between how people ate 50 or more years ago and now is that food is less expensive (comparatively) and many people have more income – so we all eat more. I’ve told the story about how 1 can of peas used to serve 6 of us for dinner – and my wife says it was the same deal in her family. Plus snacks were rare. It’s not that we exercise less (no one jogged or worked out in the 50s or 60s – a lot of people today exercise more), it’s just that we’re eating many more calories.
Laurie Bullock says
Yes, true. Salsa is a healthy snack, but we still have to be moderate in our consumption!
Kiran @ KiranTarun.com says
Food like many, definitely has evolved. I can’t imagine having salsa store bought. I’d rather make my own 🙂
Awesome guest post!
Laurie Bullock says
Hotly Spiced says
What a beautiful looking salsa. And I agree with you Maureen – the chemicals and pesticides our generation has pretty much been forced to consume has done us no end of damage. Like you say, we need to get back to growing food and eating like our grandparents did – they didn’t get diagnosed with half of the chronic diseases we’re getting diagnosed with xx
Tania @ A Perfect Pantry says
Love the idea of bottling these as a gift…
Marina@Picnic at Marina says
Maureen it is yummy! Makes a great gift and a great treat for a special person…
I love everything homegrown and homemade… which is pesticide, GMO, irradiation, etc FREE…
You are so right – it’s hard not to love these old classics! What a great salsa recipe and a really good looking salsa! Your aunt really knows how to make salsa! Thanks for sharing this family recipe and very nice to meet you Laurie!
Laurie Bullock says
Thanks! Yes, new recipes are fun, but there is something special about the tried and true ones that get passed through the generations. 🙂
I can make a meal out of nachos and salsa. This salsa would be a feast. 🙂
Baker Street says
I get that feeling too! There’s just a need to try out grandmother recipes! Thanks for sharing this lovely recipe, Laurie! I’m definitely going to give it a try!
Laurie Bullock says
You’re welcome! I believe that recipes are meant to be shared!
Iron Chef Shellie says
mmmmmm yum!! and what a perfect looking gift, everyone loves salsa, especially if it’s a family recipe! 😀
The Café Sucré Farine says
Yummy indeed Maureen! Looks like a wonderful recipe to have for parties and get togethers, love the vibrant red color!
I know what you mean, Chris, just sitting on the table with chips to poke in while you chat with friends. perfect
Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella says
This will be great for summer tomatoes! And I got a bit excited because I have those ball jars! 😀
Jenn and Seth says
that looks like a super delicious salsa! i’m totally wishing i had a chip to dip into it right now!
Wow!! I have never made salsa….and you are right. Nothing beats old fashioned fresh produce……that’s why I love shopping at small farmer’s market. Their products don’t look the best, but they are so good because they mostly sell backyard stuff, minus all the fancy pesticides and fertilizers.
Great looking salsa!
We don’t find much “back yard” stuff around here but most of it is organic and that’s a big plus for me
Ilan (IronWhisk Blog) says
I love salsa! But not very spicy salsa.. hmm.
I sure want to try this one out plus it involves canning that should be fun 🙂
That’s what I like about preserving – I can make it just as hot or mild as we like it.
What a great post, and I agree with you. This salsa looks fresh and tasty, my husband would love it and so would I!
What a nice guest post and a wonderful salsa recipe. We’re just driving home from the cottage and reading your lovely blog has made my trip less boring. I’m not driving, of course.
Just thinking of you being at the cottage makes me envious 🙂
Laurie Bullock says
Thank you everyone, for complimenting this recipe. The beauty of it is you can adjust the peppers to suit your taste for hot/sweet. It is a bit of work, but if I am really busy, I have learned to prepare the tomatoes on the first day, and then refrigerate them til the following day when I chop the peppers and other ingredients and cook it down and can it. Canning can seem daunting at first, but once you do it, you learn how to get a routine going. 🙂
SarahKate (Mi Casa-Su Casa) says
Is there ANYTHING better than homemade salsa??? I haven’t bought salsa from a store in years. It just isn’t very good. This looks like a fantastic recipe!
Laurie Bullock says
Thank you! I get a lot of requests for it!
Oh delicious! I would make this when summer is here again!!
I love this recipe. I am desperate for something to do with my abundant tomato and pepper crop this year. I enjoy canning but always get nervous.
I agree with you, maureen! those family recipes are classics and always turn out perfect!
This salsa looks fabulous! and i like how so many peppers are used… i like spice in my food 😉
Great guest post!
I love home made salsa too. Your’s looks terrific!
It is nice to meet Laurie, and I love learning about canning. I really want to learn more about canning, and I look forward to making fun canning treats someday:-) Love the salsa recipe, and the addition of apple cider vinegar sounds delicious….I mean yummy! Hugs, Terra
Kitchen Belleicious says
now that is one heck of a salsa! WOW! It looks so flavorful and fiery and yummy! Must try it soon. My husband would just eat chips and salsa everyday if he could! Sorry been MIA- after posting last monday I had family in all week. Now that my son is back in mommy’s day out I have lot more time on my hands! YEAH!
Lora @cakeduchess says
I agree with you Maureen. Laurie-this salsa looks fantastic. I love the spicy kick. I could eat it as a meal with some wonderful chips:)Thanks for sharing this great recipe!
The look and the sound of your salsa sure looks awesome Laurie…I need to stop being lazy and make salsa at home instead of buying it at the store 🙂
Thanks for the recipe and hope you are having a fabulous week!
Barb @ Profiteroles & Ponytails says
I feel the same way. I love to try the recipes that are “family approved” and have been passed along from generation to generation. My grandparents were farmers and grew/raised almost everything that they ate, so a love for things grown “naturally” is in my blood. Laurie, you salsa looks fresh and delicious. I’d love a big plate of cheesy nachos with your salsa right now!
Nami | Just One Cookbook says
Hello Laurie! Thanks for sharing your aunt special recipe with us! I’m not familiar with canning but interesting to see apple cider vinegar in the recipe. I am used to just opening the packaged salsa and I don’t even know sometimes what’s really in the jar/can/package. My husband made salsa several times but the recipe he uses requires grilling peppers and oh boy that takes a long time to make. It’s probably fancier version and tastes wonderful but I have to say we don’t make it from scratch often. But it’s nice to go back to basic and make homemade. Thanks for the post, Laurie and Maureen!
Glamorous Glutton says
Family recipes are so precious and making use of home cooked produce makes things even more special. A wonderful looking salsa. GG
Homemade is the only way to go with salsa – especially when tomatoes are so stunning and in season! This looks amazing!
Isn’t homemade salsa just one of the best treats! We can so much that we never buy store-bought salsa ever. Your recipe is very similar to ours. YUMMY! PS: I may have already told you this, but forgive me if I repeat myself…I’ve moved over to WordPress and have your blog listed in my ‘delicious blogs’ list. If you’d consider following along over there, I’d appreciate it since my Blogger location will come to an end someday. I appreciate your support.
Homemade salsa is always the best! I envy all you canners and one day I will, but honestly the worry about not doing it correctly especially for a beginner like me is what puts me off. But I’ll gladly and happily make this salsa and enjoy it right away!!
Choc Chip Uru says
Gaaah how did I miss this delicious looking post? Your salsa beats store bought forever my friend 😀
Choc Chip Uru
Helene Dsouza I Masala Herb says
Just early I thought of making my own salsa. I really dig this kind food. =)
Maureen I hear you! Seriously there is a reason why some people are sooo huge in fat and overeating is only half the reason.
YUM! I looooove salsa and anything mexican for that matter. I would have never have thought to put apple cider in there. I drink that for health reasons, always good to know how else I can use it!
I know what you mean, Hannah!
Barbara @ Barbara Bakes says
How fantastic to have homemade salsa during the winter. I really need to do more canning.
I keep telling myself I’m going to do more canning but I haven’t gotten there yet. Because it never gets cold here we have local fresh food year round.
Christian Rene Friborg says
What kind of chili do you usually mix with your salsa? I like it hot and spicy!
I’m between mild and spicy. I don’t like to melt my lips off or drain my sinuses. 🙂
Man, this is a really broad quietson as you can make all sorts of salsa, from green to red, to uncooked, to cooked.I happen to think that the best salsas are made by roasting the tomatoes in the broiler along with the jalepenos and onion as well, then letting them cool a bit, then adding it along with any other ingredients you might like (in a standard salsa, lime, salt, pepper, garlic).My favorite salsas are usually roasted like that.Unless of course, it is a typical pico de gallo, which you shouldn’t put in the processor at all just chop.