Salsa is a great addition to low calorie nachos (hint hint, recipe coming tomorrow), eggs (or egg beater omelets), low calorie quesadillas, soft tacos (recipe coming for soft tacos in coming weeks as well), and many other foods!!
My favorite store bought salsa is called Casa Sanchez Hot Salsa Roja (which you can buy at Whole Foods or Safeway), but I've always desired to create my own salsa at home. After trying various recipes and approaches, I finally found a combination that I really like. Here it is:
- one 28oz can of whole fresh tomatoes (note: canned tomatoes will end up being less watery than fresh, and are easier to work with as fresh tomatoes tend to get more mushy; additionally, canned tomatoes have more Lycopene in them, so they are actually more nutritious!)
- 1/2-1 medium onion
- 4-8 cloves of garlic
- 1-2 jalapeno peppers
- 1/2-1 teaspoon salt
- juice from 1 lime
1. Cut off both ends off the onion. Cut in half and remove the outer layers.
2. Remove the papery skin from 4-8 cloves of garlic depending on how garlicy you like your salsa.
3. Wash one or two jalapeno peppers and cut off the stems. Cut them in half lengthwise. The white pith (and to a lesser extent the seeds) contain the heat, not the green flesh. So remove some of the seeds and pith depending on how hot you want your salsa.
4. Wash and pat dry a handful of cilantro.
5. In a food processor, process the garlic, peppers, and half of the onion into the finest possible pieces. Add the salt, lime juice, cilantro, and 3/4 of the tomatoes, and process until no tomato chunks remain.
6. If you like chunky salsa, add the remaining tomatoes, and process briefly to produce tomato chunks of the desired size. Dice the remaining onion by hand and combine with the tomato mixture. If you like smooth salsa, add all of the onion and tomato at once, and just process until smooth.
Fresh homemade salsa can be enjoyed immediately, although it takes 1 hour in the fridge for the flavors to completely mature.
Given that salsa is made entirely of fruits, herbs, and vegetables, it is extremely low calorie. Two tablespoons are about 10 calories, or 0 weight watchers points.
So, what foods do you like to put salsa on? And, if you don't like salsa, what do you use instead?