When I woke up yesterday morning I was like “Self, it’s supposed to be 30 degrees today so I think the best thing to do is start up the two largest burners on the stove and cook and can some stuff”. Bad idea. I looked like that chef on Chopped that’s under the timer sweating every ounce of liquid in him into his food but since my big mouth had already posted on the MHTF Facebook wall that I was making salsa I had to push it out.
I took the Daughters over to my BFF’s house and the four kids played while we started looking for recipes to use. Every one we found was all like “peel your tomatoes ” and “add cilantro” and my BFF and I DISLIKE STRONGLY, 1) additional work and, 2) cilantro so we decided to just wing it. And we did. I think everything but the kitchen sink ended up in this batch of salsa and I have yet to taste it but I hope it’s delish. Truthfully, the kids were starting to hang from our limbs and it was so hot out we forgot to add the vinegar and sugar to the pot but with the laundry list of veggies (and fruit) we threw in there hopefully it won’t matter!
Another good friend of the Farmer’s that makes wonderful salsa recommends using Bernardin Salsa Mix for making your own. It’s a simple spice mix and tells you on the jar how much of what to add to make a batch. I’m told it’s available in Walmart, Canadian Tire and most grocery stores in the spice aisle or with the other canning supplies so try this out too. I’m sure you can put in whatever you’d like and just cook it up, there’s no rules in my opinion and it’s not like I’m trying to win a contest or anything.
What we had were two monster bowls of tomaotes from the BFF’s Dad’s garden. They were a bit under ripe but since we were in the mood we went to work a-dicing.
Added an onion, some yellow, red and orange peppers, three jalapenos, two cloves of garlic, a bowl of strawberries, an apple, a peach the zest from two limes (and one whole lime chopped up since we didn’t want to waste them) and one sticker from a yellow pepper (apologies in advance to the soul that eats this).
It took us about an hour of chopping to get it all done and in bowls but it went by fast because we were chatting the whole time. I recommend doing this with a friend or it would feel so much more like a chore than it actually is.
Once that was done I dumped them all in a big pot and stirred, stirred, stirred for about 40 minutes until it cooked down to about half the size it was when I put it in. Make sure you stay there and stir it continuously otherwise IT WILL BURN. I left it for a few minutes to check on the minions and it burnt onto the bottom of the pot in one spot. I added salt (no measurement, just to taste) and then meant to put in vinegar and sugar but got distracted (SQUIRREL!) and forgot.
Once it had cooked down we ladled it into jars that had been sterilized by boiling them in hot water for 5 minutes. Make sure you wipe the rims of the jars before putting the lids and sealers on or they won’t seal properly. Then we put them in a water bath canner for about 10 minutes per jar and took them out to seal on the counter.
I don’t know if it’s necessary to can them because my Mom hasn’t ever water bath canned anything in her life, as long as the contents were warm enough and the jar rim was dry her jars sealed on their own but it’s whatever your preference is.
K&C’s Everything Salsa
I’d let it sit for a few days before popping a jar to let the flavours mix a bit but I’m sure you can dive in right away too. Happy canning, enjoy your salsa! Kim.