Garden Salsa

There seems to be a proliferation of canned and bottled salsas in the markets today, ranging from mild to super hot. If you'd like to try a hand at making your own, you'll really enjoy the freshness and you can eliminate the benzoate of soda for a preservative.

Fresh garden vegetables everywhere! Now is the time to make salsa. Vined ripened tomatoes are a chef's delight. Those that you get from a hot house are ripened the artificial way--with a gas to speed up the process--and it does absolutely nothing for the taste in tomato. They just look red. For your own Garden Salsa, you'll need:

4 ea.                 ripened tomatoes
1/2                   onion
1 ea.                 green pepper, seeded
2 cloves              fresh garlic
1 TB                  fresh cilantro
1 TB                  tabasco
1 ea.                 med zucchini
to taste              salt and pepper
to taste              peppers, hot or mild 

Toss it all in the food processor and give it a whirl for a few seconds. You want it to be just chopped up, not smooth. Put in your own favorite peppers--also known as pungent aromatic condiments--to your own taste. What causes peppers to be hot? It's a cystalline substance called capsaisin. And the hotter the climate, the hotter the peppers.

My favorites are fresh jalepenos. The larger yellowish banana peppers are milder and give a delicate warm flavor. I've met some interesting people who grow those funky little hot peppers, like chili peppers and even tabasco peppers--whatever turns you on. Create your own in a unique style. And as always, a creative cook is a good cook.