Fresh Mexican Salsa and an Onion Lesson

Have you ever wondered how they made that amazing fresh vegetable salsa that you get in Mexican restaurants? Well, I did until I met the amazing and talented Mike Martinez. He and his family have been teaching this white boy to make Mexican food for many years. This post is a thank you to the Martinez clan. I hope we can cook together again soon!

Get together your ingredients:

5 cups roma tomatoes (about 10)
5 cups jalapeños (about 15)
2 1/2 cups white onions
6 cloves garlic
1 head cilantro (chopped)
3 serrano peppers
3 limes
1 shot of tequila

This recipe does not have to be perfect by any means. The measurements are not as important as how it tastes. They say that the spicier the salsa the better lover you are but who’s keeping score? Make your own decision.

If you have a bunch of people over that are NOT into hot food, you can use fewer jalapeños. In the pictures below I made a more tame version.

There is only two real rules in making salsa:
1) Cut everything into very small pieces.
2) Do not forget the Tequila.

The smaller the chunks, the more the flavors mix together. The tequila does exactly what alcohol usually does, it makes all of the flavors more attractive to each-other and sometimes the vegetables make bad decisions.

I like to begin by cutting the onions. There are three easy steps:

Hold the onion with the root stump near you and cut it straight down the middle like this:

Cut off the tip (not the root) and peel back the skin from both halves. Slice perpendicularly and then flip the onion half 90 degrees to the left. Batterjunkie-7951Then slice perpendicularly again like this:Batterjunkie-7952This will yield little tiny onion bits! Next slice your little tomatoes.Batterjunkie-7953Slice, scrape out pith and seeds with a spoon, and chop your jalapeños.Batterjunkie-7955 It should be noted that one should use extreme caution after chopping jalapeños when touching the more sensitive or otherwise naughty bits of one’s body. Capsaicin (the active chemical in peppers) can cause the most lingering and painful of burns.Batterjunkie-7957Next check your proportions! Here you see I have about double the amount of tomatoes as jalapeños and also double the amount of jalapeños than onions. With these proportions it will be pretty spicy for most people but you will learn to love it. If not…I can’t help you.

Next add all of the remaining ingredients together in a bowl. Mix them around a bit with a fork. Then add the tequila and squeeze the juice of the limes into the mixture.Batterjunkie-7958
Finally give this baby another stir with your fork and pop it in the refrigerator. I would recommend letting it sit for at least a few hours before eating it but if you are short on time  you can eat it right away.

This is bound to spice up any dinner party! Once again a huge thank you to the Martinez family!

Labels: dip, Mexican, side, onion

4 thoughts on “Fresh Mexican Salsa and an Onion Lesson

  1. Hola Devon!

    If you were making a Mango salsa, would you still add the tequila?

    We made our first salsa this weekend, and didn't know to add alcohol. Still delicous, but would have it been better?


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