One of the things that keeps me stumped in the several years since I began gardening is the fact that sometimes, two things that go so well together are not ready for harvest at the same time! My dill is long gone by the time I have nice, crisp cabbage heads, for example. I really wish I had basil around to accompany the last of the tomatoes these days, and now I am wishing we still had a big flush of tomatoes since the poblanos are all finally ready. But alas, the tomatoes are looking quite faded, enough for a small batch of something, but not my big salsa operation. So despite having grown oh so many tomatoes this summer, I did indeed just buy a box of Romas at the farmers market!
And they’re yellow. Well why not? I was in an experimenting mood since I make this same salsa recipe every year. Would yellow tomatoes be a tad sweeter or more mild so the peppers stand out? My experiment was with zero scientific accuracy as I also used different peppers than my last batch of salsa. Whichever variable caused it, I’m telling you, this batch isn’t the prettiest color, but it’s dang good. With all this roasted goodness, I don’t think you can go very wrong. No matter the color of your tomatoes, peppers or onions, this is the reliable salsa recipe you’ve been searching for (and you don’t even need to peel those tomatoes and peppers)!
This recipe is absolutely delicious. I’ve changed out the types of tomatoes, peppers and onions so many times, and it is always top-notch flavor! Don’t be intimidated as you read the recipe. It is the sort of process that can be broken up into a billion tiny steps – perfect for a work-from-home day, or those parents home with children! Roast. break. roast. break. blend. break. mix. break… Did I mention you don’t peel the veggies and it’s canning safe?!
- 16 lbs tomatoes
- 4 lbs peppers (any combo of sweet/hot)
- 3.5 lbs onions
- 2 heads of garlic
- 2 c. lime juice
- 2 c. apple cider vinegar
- 3 cups of cilantro
- 3 T oregano dried or several sprigs fresh
- 1/4 c. powdered cumin
- 3 T salt
- 2 T black peppercorns
- Optional: additional ground hot peppers such as cayenne to increase heat
- *Core the tomatoes and peppers. Roast them on baking sheets or roasting pans at 450, or roast them on your grill. I highly recommend using a deeper dish for roasting the tomatoes, such as a 9×13 baking dish. As the tomatoes cook, there will be a lot of juices! [These are oh so delicious so please do set aside. Drink it on the spot, or freeze it for adding to soups.] I like to slice the tomatoes in half and put the open side down to get some blistering on the skins. I also rub the peppers with a little bit of oil before popping the pan in the oven. They are done when you are satisfied with the amount of blistering. I like to have them go until they look as the photos show.
- *Cut off the ends of the onions, peel them and slice them in half. I oil the pan and rub them all around in the oil. Slice the tops off your garlic heads just to the tip of the cloves, and set the whole head on your baking sheet for roasting. If you have already separated cloves, just wrap them in tin foil and set the package on your baking sheet for roasting.
- Here’s the fun part. Toss it all into the blender. You’ll need to do several different batches. Make sure to split up your liquids with dried veggies, such as onions. I blend what I can, dump in the soup kettle, blend more, add to soup kettle, etc. If your blender has power enough, you can actually throw everything in whole – the half onions, whole garlic cloves, even whole peppercorns! We love the consistency shown in the picture, so I just blend. If you like a chunkier consistency, you will want to pulse half of your veggies instead of blending them. You may also wish to peel the peppers or tomatoes in this case as you might get some chewier skins coming through.
- Once it is all in the soup kettle, bring it to a simmer and simmer for about half an hour, or while you’re heating your water bath canner and sanitizing your jars.
- Following safe canning rules, pour the hot salsa into hot, sterile jars. Process for 20 minutes.
Makes roughly 12 pint jars
*This whole process of roasting might take a few turns in your oven. I like to scoop the roasted veggies from the pan into a large glass heat-resistant bowl (shown in tomato picture). It is just fine to have all the roasted veggies in the same bowl. Then keep using the same pans for subsequent batches in the oven.