One of the hardest parts of traveling to remote countries is that it is not always easy to find some of the foods you enjoy the most back home. That in itself presents a great opportunity for exploring new foods, but let’s face it: sometimes it’s nice to have some tried and true comfort food.

Homemade Salsa

Homemade Salsa

A good example of that for me is mexican food. It’s probably my favourite cuisine, and it was pretty rare that we didn’t have tacos at least weekly in my household growing up.

Unfortunately in many parts of the world I’ve been in, finding mexican salsa can be a real pain. Even if you can find it (like here in Brazil), it’s an imported item that can easily cost $10 for a small container’s worth.

Thankfully making fresh salsa at home is a pretty easy task, and one that I’ve performed a few times over the last few years. While salsa can be a bit more tricky if you intend to can and preserve it, it’s quite simple to make a tasty batch that you can leave in the fridge for a week or so. Here is my fresh salsa recipe for when I travel.

Fresh Salsa Recipe

Here are the ingredients I use in my salsa. Feel free to mix and match based on what you can actually find in your location.

For Cooking:

  • 4 roma (italian) tomatoes, diced and deseeded
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 3 tablespoons of tomato paste (you can buy paste for this, or simply blend up some tomatoes yourself)
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh cilantro (coriander)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced small
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, diced small
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper, diced small
  • 1/2 yellow (sweet) onion, diced small
  • 1 jalapeño or hot pepper, partially deseeded
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar

Combine all of the ingredients listed above (except for the tomato paste) into a small pot with a teaspoon of olive oil and cook on low (2-3 on a 10 point scale) for 20 minutes, or until the onions look thoroughly cooked and everything is a tad bit mushy.

Transfer about 1/3 of the mixture into a blender or a food processor along with the tomato paste and liquify the entire mixture. Combine the blended and unblended mixture back together again and remove from the heat.

For Finishing:

  • 1 tablespoon of fresh cilantro (coriander)
  • 1/2 of a lime (for the juice)

Add the fresh cilantro into the mixture along with the juice from half of a lime. Mix thoroughly and then transfer into glass or tupperware container. Put the container in the fridge and cool for at least a few hours prior to serving.

I love the taste of this salsa, and it usually works out to be far cheaper than anything you can buy in the stores. Since there isn’t much acid in the salsa, it wouldn’t be safe to store it for an extended period of time. But you’ll be fine putting it in the fridge for up to a week and using it periodically.

If you are looking to make even more salsa, check out Hot Salsas: 40 Simple, Quick, Easy and Spicy Authentic Mexican Salsa Recipes on Amazon.

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