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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Sun-dried Tomato Salsa



























With graduation parties around the corner and for other summer parties, this is good recipe to make ahead of time. It is a recipe for large amount of salsa. This recipe yields 96 oz jar of salsa, but you can cut down the ingredients to make desired amount.

I was inspired by my co-workers to make this salsa. Every Friday we take turns bringing snack for office, everyone looks forward to this at end of a hectic week. It was my turn to take snack today. I love my colleagues. I take great pleasure and always look forward to make something new for them. This time I made this salsa and it was a great hit.

I never tried sun dried tomatoes when I was in India. We do have other sun dried vegetables in India, because certain vegetables are in abundance only certain time of year. Back in old days when they did not have frozen veggies, they used to preserve veggies by drying them in hot sun. In India you get various sun dried veggies like Okra, Ker Sangri, various Berries, Guar beans and various other beans etc etc, but I never saw Sun dried tomatoes until I came to this country.

Now I love them, besides making this salsa, I also make sun dried tomato sauce with Marsala wine for Portabella mushrooms raviolis (recipe on this blog). Here is what I found more info on sun dried tomatoes on my favorite website wikipedia.

Sun-dried tomatoes are ripe tomatoes which are placed in the sun to remove most of the water content from the tomatoes. Cherry types of tomatoes will lose 88% of their initial (fresh) weight, whilst larger tomatoes can lose up to 93% during the process. As a result, it takes anywhere from 8 to 14 kilos of fresh tomatoes to make a single kilo of sun dried tomatoes.

After the procedure the tomato fruits will keep their nutritional value. The tomatoes are high in lycopene, antioxidants, and vitamin C and low in sodium, fat, and calories.

Sun dried tomatoes were created in the tile roofs of Italy as a way to store fresh tomatoes for the winter. This technique is still used for tomatoes, only in much larger quantities of tomatoes and for commercial use (commercially available tomatoes).

Sun-dried tomatoes can be used in a wide variety of recipes and come in a variety of shapes, colors, and tomatoes. Traditionally they were made from dried red plum tomatoes, but they can be purchased in yellow varieties of tomatoes as well.

Sun-dried tomatoes may also be preserved in olive oil, along with other ingredients such as rosemary, basil, dried paprika, and garlic.



Ingredients:


* 2 pound jar of sun dried tomatoes in olive oil

* 3 red onions

* 3-4 Jalapeno peppers (or to desired heat)

* 12-15 fresh red chili pepper pods (or to desired heat) I used frozen.

* 2 cups of crushed tomatoes from can

* 12 cloves of garlic

* 1/4 cup of lemon juice

* 1/3 cup of Apple cider vinegar

* 2 table spoon of cumin powder

* 1 tablespoon of taco seasoning

* 2 teaspoons of cayenne pepper powder

* 1 tablespoon of paprika powder

* 2 teaspoons of salt or to taste

* 1 tablespoon of corn starch

* 1/2 cup of water to mix corn starch

* 2 teaspoon of sugar

* 1 bunch of cilantro

* 1/4 cup of fresh mint leaves (optional)



Method:



* Soak the sun dried tomatoes in enough water to submerge the tomatoes for 1 hour (with its oil in the jar).

* Boil them in this water for 30 min, turn the heat off and let them cool.

* Grind onions, jalapenos, garlic in food processor to fine chunky consistency.

* Grind the soaked tender sun dried tomatoes in food processor to fine paste.

* Add crushed tomatoes from can and two cups of water to this paste and heat it on stove.

* Add ground onions, garlic and jalapenos to this.

* Add all the spice and salt and cook until it boils.

* Add corn starch mixed with water to this and cook for few more minutes.

* Add lemon juice and vinegar and sugar.

* Mix well and turn the heat off.

* Chop cilantro and mint in food processor.

* Add chopped cilantro and mint to salsa.

* Let it cool and fill it in air tight jars.

* Refrigerate.


This can stay fresh in the fridge for about 2-4 weeks.



Sun dried tomatoes information source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sun-dried_tomato
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Text_of_Creative_Commons_Attribution-ShareAlike_3.0_Unported_License


Recipe and Photographs by Surekha.

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