Our family uses salsa like others use ketchup. Whether it’s breakfast, lunch, dinner or just snacking, you will usually find a big bowl of salsa and tortilla chips on the table. Ninety percent of restaurants in El Paso will have the same offering of chips and salsa where in other cities you will find breadsticks.
The one person in our family whose meal is not complete without a “fresh” bowl of salsa is my brother Mando. Of course, there’s no problem there. He just makes his own. Since I’ve written about my other brother, Jose, I thought I’d give my brother Mando equal time.
My brothers are so special to me. With all of us getting on in years, I feel a need to strengthen our bond. My sadness for Gloria, when she recently lost her beloved brother, made me realize how quickly life can pass us by. We must take the time we have to acknowledge our love and caring for each other. No, we don’t always get along. We each have our own distinct personalities. But that’s what makes us special in each other’s eyes. So folks, here is my other brother, Mando. I think his bald head is so cute!
This is my brother's recipe for his salsa. I believe it was inspired by my mom's recipe, but he's managed to adapt it by adding his own flair.
Armando (my brother), was born and raised in El Paso, in El Segundo Barrio. Graduate of "La Tech." Musician, printer, and computer technician, worked for El Paso Times and Digital Corp. for thirteen years. Now works for the Albuquerque Independent School System in their Multi-integrated Computer systems department. He is married and has ten (!!) kids. "Consejos (advice) came from my grandmother (mi Chita), my mom, and my brother. They are the ones I have to thank for the successes in life. Words of wisdom came from mi Chita; words of courage came from Mom."
Makes approximately 4 cups
2 pounds jalapeños
2 tablespoons oil
Garlic salt, to taste
½ large onion, chopped
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 bunch fresh cilantro, minced
Rinse the jalapeños. Remove the stems. Boil in 4 quarts of water with the oil. Add garlic salt to taste. When the water starts boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for 1½ to 2 hours. Periodically check to make sure the water level in the pot remains full. Drain the chiles, reserving some of the juice, and set aside. Allow to cool slightly. In a large bowl, mash the jalapeños with a potato masher or even a pastry cutter. Make sure all the jalapeños are completely broken up. Cool slightly. Add the onion, tomatoes, and cilantro. Add reserved chile juice to achieve desired consistency. Cover bowl and refrigerate for about 1 hour.
Other salsa recipes.
This salsa can be used as a marinade on chicken and turkey as well.
½ cup olive oil
½ cup lime juice
½ cup tequila
2 tablespoons triple sec
1 can ( 4 ounces ) diced green chiles, undrained
Combine all ingredients. If using as a salsa, serve chilled. Makes 2 cups.
Salsa for a Crowd
3 cans ( 28 ounces) stewed tomatoes
1 can ( 15 ounce) tomato sauce
3 medium fresh tomatoes, diced
3 bunches green onions, chopped
1 tablespoon canned, chopped jalapeños
2 cloves garlic, pressed
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
1 can ( 7 ounce) chopped green chiles
1 teaspoon sugar
Mix well and store in glass jars in refrigerator for up to a week. Makes 6 cups.
Pico de Gallo 1
4 medium tomatoes, chopped
6 green onions, chopped with some of the tops
2 to 3 jalapeños, seeded and chopped
1 ½ tablespoons vegetable oil
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Blend all ingredients and stir well. Chill before serving. Makes 2 cups.
Pico de Gallo 2
8 long green chiles, roasted, peeled, deveined and chopped
2 small yellow chiles, roasted, peeled and chopped
5 green onions, chopped (including tops)
5 medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons salad oil
1 teaspoon vinegar
Salt to taste
Combine all ingredients; chill. Will keep at least 2 weeks in refrigerator. Serve with tostada chips for an appetizer. Makes 2 cups.
Pico de Gallo 3
2 tomatoes, finely chopped
½ onion, finely chopped
3 jalapeños, stemmed, seeded, finely chopped
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh cilantro
Juice of ½ lime
¼ teaspoon salt
Dash of hot pepper sauce, optional
In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, onion, jalapeño peppers, cilantro, lime juice, salt, and hot pepper sauce. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour to allow the flavors to blend together. Makes about 3 cups.
4 small fresh jalapeño chiles, chopped
2 large tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 onion, minced
½ teaspoon garlic powder
Dash of salt
Mix all ingredients thoroughly. This is delicious served with crackers or as a chile sauce for tacos. Also good with meat. Makes 1 cup.
2 cups chopped fresh pineapple
½ cup orange juice
Juice of 1 lime
1 teaspoon grated lime peel
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Grate 1 tablespoon orange peel; set aside. Peel orange and chop coarsely. Combine grated orange peel, chopped orange and remaining salsa ingredients, except cilantro, in medium bowl. Cover and Refrigerate 24 hours. Before serving, stir cilantro into salsa. Makes 4 to 6 servings.
2 peaches, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons fresh jalapeños
½ cup onion, diced
¼ cup lime juice
1 tablespoon cilantro, finely chopped
¼ teaspoon cumin
Combine all ingredients and refrigerate several hours. Makes 1 cup.
1 mango, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons canned jalapeños, diced
½ cup onion, diced
¼ cup lime juice
1 tablespoon dried cilantro
¼ teaspoon dried cumin
Combine all ingredients and refrigerate several hours. Excellent with fish. Makes 1 cup.