The Flat Possum Gazette  

Test Kitchen

Courtesy of the Road-Kill Press

= Possum-Mexican Salsa =

Bill,
I've been experimenting with Salsas. The salsas are to be used not only with Mexican dishes, but other stuff, for example, we used the following salsa with baked eggs in a nest for breakfast today, and it can be used with lots of dishes, room temp, warmed or chilled. Try this:

8 to 10 Plum tomatoes (the Roma variety)
1 to 3 fresh Jalapeno chiles
1 white onion, medium, sliced 1/4" thick
4 to 6 garlic cloves, peeled
1/3 Cup chopped cilantro OR 1/3 C. chopped parsley
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 to 2 teaspoons Apple Cider Vinegar
Lawry's seasoned salt
Cayenne Pepper
Threadgill's Veggie Seasoning
Tabasco (either the regular kind or the new garlic Tabasco)

1.  Heat the broiler.  Lay the whole tomatoes and jalapenos out on a cookie sheet with sides on it and lined with foil. (To contain the juice created in broiling.) Set this pan about 4 to 6 inches below the broiler and broil for about 6-7 minutes. They should be obviously roasted and even blackened and scorched looking on the surface. The tomatoes will probably split. With tongs turn them over and roast the other side until blackened and scorched, another 6 minutes or so. The object is to cook the tomatoes and jalapenos through as well as to char them. They both take on a more flavorful taste when broiled.  Set aside to cool.

2.  Turn the oven down to 425 deg.  Separate the onion into rings. On a similiar cookie sheet, combine the onions and garlic.  Roast them in the oven, stirring them around every few minutes so they are browned, or even charred on the edges. The garlic should be soft and browned in spots. This should take about 15 to 20 minutes. Cool to room temp.  These things take some monitoring, so don't screw off and do something else.

3.  When cool, cut out the cores from the tomatoes where the stems were attached. Discard the cores. I pulled the skins off with tongs and set the skins aside.  In a food processor, pulse the jalapenos (do the whole thing, seeds and all) along with the onion and garlic until chopped moderately fine. Scrape into a mixing bowl.  Without washing the processor, coarsely puree the tomatoes, with all the juice that accumulated on the cookie sheet.  I also put in the processor about half of the semi-blackened tomato skins to add a smoky taste.  Stir in the cilantro or parsley.  ( I made two batches, both identical except one used cilantro and the other used parsley - - we could barely tell the difference in taste.)

4.  Taste and season with salt and cider vinegar.  At this point you may want to add more cayenne or Tabasco.  My first version was a little bland, and I also added a can of V8 juice. You may want to add some tomato sauce or even water if your salsa is not the consistency you prefer. It is now ready to use, or refrigerate, covered, for a week or so, until you start getting a very interesting thick, green, fuzzy mold culture forming on top. Then, I am sorry to say, it is probably about time to make a fresh batch. Or, you can freeze it before that friendly mold starts to grow. This stuff (without the mold) is great on enchiladas, an accompaniment to beans of all kinds, and rice. I think it would be great on grilled fish filets.  Use your imagination. By the way, your homemade beer would taste awfully good with this salsa.

Dad

 

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