Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Homemade Salsa

Everyone has their own tastes and interpretations when it comes to salsa.  I was given a salsa recipe from a friend.   It contained quite a bit of sugar.  We don't use much sugar so I went on with the task of lowering the sugar. It also contained a thickener that dulled the color of our salsa.  I removed it so our salsa is more like fresh salsa, but canned. 

Taste your salsa before you can it.  If you wouldn't eat it fresh, you won't like it canned. 

Homemade Salsa

20 cups chopped peeled and seeded tomatoes*
1 to 1-1/2 cups minced onions (onions can be strong so ease in slow)
1-1/2 cups minced green peppers
7 banana peppers, minced
5-6 jalapenos (if they are hot, use less --if you can't tell start off with fewer, you can always add more), minced
2 Tablespoons sugar
2-1/2 Tablespoons chili powder
5-6 dashes of red cayenne pepper
1-1/2 cups vinegar
2 Tablespoons salt

Tomato taste differs year to year and even during the season.  Mix all of the ingredients in a bowl. Taste, taste, taste as you season! 
 Pour into a large stock pot and heat to a boil. 
Ladle hot into clean, hot pint jars, leaving 1/2" headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe rims of jars with a dampened, clean paper towel; apply two-piece metal canning lids. Water bath process for 15 minutes.**
We like black beans and corn in our salsa but in order to can it that way you have to pressure can the jar.  We prefer make it as we eat it so we dump a pint of salsa into a quart jar and then add in our drained and rinsed beans and corn. 

*I prep my tomatoes a day ahead so they will let go of some of their juices.  I then drain off the liquid before adding the rest of the ingredients. 

**As with all canning recipes please refer to the National Center for Home Food Preservation for information on what can be water bath canned and what needs to be pressure canned.  Each elevation has their own time needed to process. General rule of thumb is items under 4.6 pH can be safely water bathed.  My salsa was 4.05.

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