Friday, April 19, 2013


Did y’all notice that I’m giving you a three fer today?  It couldn’t be helped.  I made one recipe, and used it three ways, so I had to share them all with you…just keep reading!

I get most of my cooking inspiration from whatever looks good and fresh at the super market, or farmer’s market.  So it happened that at the market were these bright red, giant, ripe tomatoes that I just had to have.  I knew right away that I would be making a salsa.  What kind of salsa I didn’t know yet.

I couldn’t decide between fresh jalapenos and smoky chipotles, so I left that to Billy.  As you probably guessed from the title of this post, he chose chipotles.  I had a honey mango left over from when I made Whole Yellow Tail Snapper and Mango Relish; so I added that for just a little sweetness to balance out the acid and the heat.  The salsa in this case doesn’t taste like mango.  Mango was used in place of sugar (some people use carrot for the sweetness).  However if you would like more mango flavor, you may reduce the amount of tomatoes and add more mango, it will also be yummy!

Now this makes a lot of salsa, which is perfect for a party.

You’re not having a party?

Go ahead and make this big batch any way because you may wanna make:

This Salsa Chicken

And/or this Salsa Pasta!

Using salsa to prepare these dishes makes dinner go together really quick, and tastes mighty good!

Here's what you do.

Cut the tomatoes in half so that all those seed pockets are open.

Over the sink or a bowl, gently squeeze the seeds out of the tomatoes.

Use the tip of a paring knife to assist in removing the stubborn seeds.  If there are a few seeds left behind it won't be the end of the world.

I like to dice everything small so that I can get a bit of everything in each bite.

Add the diced tomatoes, mango, onion and garlic to a large bowl, along with the cumin and Mexican oregano.

Three chipotles with the seeds removed will provide medium heat. If you like it hot leave the seeds; to make it more mild use less chipotles.  

Any way you like it you're gonna go ahead and mince those up.

Squeeze the juice of two limes over the top.

By twisting a fork at the same time squeezing the lime, you can get a lot more juice out of it.

Add some cilantro for freshness and give it a stir. 
Be sure to let this sit for at least two hours in the refrigerator so the flavors can marry.  If you eat this right away it won't be as tasty.
I like to use Scoop tortilla chips because they hold lots of salsa!

Now what are you gonna do with all that salsa?

How about Salsa Chicken?

I prefer to roast bone in, skin on chicken breasts, they stay really juicy.

Season the chicken with a little olive oil, salt and pepper.

Then nestle it into the salsa that has been diluted with some water.

Roast that chicken at 400 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on the size of the chicken.

Serve with pasta or rice.

Or maybe Salsa Pasta!

Add a little tomato paste to some salsa and heat it up.

Toss that in with some cooked pasta, 1/3 cup of the water that the pasta cooked in, and just a tablespoon of olive oil.

Cook that while stirring, just until the pasta has absorbed the water.

Remove the pasta from the heat.

I had sandwich slices of Havarti cheese in my refrigerator, so I added 4 slices to the pasta.

This pasta is great on its own, or served with chicken, shrimp, or scallops.


Makes 6 cups

2              lbs.         Ripe Tomatoes, seeded and diced to small dice (3 really large tomatoes)
1 ¼          cups        Onion, small dice (a medium onion)
1              cup         Mango, small dice (1 honey mango, or ½ regular mango)
2              cloves     Garlic, minced
2                           Limes, juice of
3                           Chipotles in adobe, minced; seeds removed for medium heat, seed in if you like it hot
½             tsp.        Cumin
1              tsp.        Oregano, preferably Mexican
¾             tsp.        Salt
¼             tsp.        Pepper
¼             cup        Cilantro, chopped

   1.       To seed the tomatoes, cut the tomatoes in half exposing the seed pockets, gently squeeze the halves over a bowl to force the seeds out, if necessary use the tip of a paring knife to help remove the seeds.  You don’t have to be perfect, a few seeds are okay.
   2.       Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl.  Stir to combine.
   3.       Allow the salsa to sit in the refrigerator for at least two hours.

Notes:  * The mango just adds a little sweetness; it’s not a prominent flavor.  If you would like more mango, decrease the tomatoes to about 1 ½ pounds, and increase the mangoes to two cups
**Store salsa in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.  The lime acts as a preservative.


Serves 2

2                            Bone in, skin on chicken breasts
1              tsp.         Olive oil
                             Salt and pepper
1              cup         Salsa
½             cup         Water

   1.       Pre heat oven to 400 degrees.
   2.       You may leave the skin on the chicken breasts or remove it, it’s up to you.  Drizzle about ½ tsp. olive oil over each chicken breast and sprinkle with salt and pepper. 
   3.       Pour the salsa and the water into an oven proof baking dish, and nestle the chicken breasts into the salsa.
   4.       Bake in the hot oven for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken.
Serve salsa chicken with rice of pasta.

Note: * The cooking times are for bone in chicken, boneless chicken will on take 20 to 30 minutes to cook.


Serves 2 to 3

½             pound     Long pasta, such as spaghetti, angel hair or linguini
2              cup        Salsa
2              Tbsp.      Tomato paste
1/3           cup        Reserved pasta cooking water

   1.       Cook the pasta for about 2 minutes less than the package directions say.
   2.       Meanwhile, in a small sauce pan combine the salsa and tomato paste.  Just heat through over medium heat.
   3.       Drain the cooked pasta but reserve about 1/3 cup of the cooking water.
   4.       Add the drained pasta back to the pot, along with the salsa the reserved cooking water, and the olive oil.  Return the pot to the heat, cook and stir the pasta over medium high until the pasta has absorbed the water.

   5.       Remove from the heat and add the cheese, stir until the cheese has melted.

Serve with chicken, fish, shrimp, scallops

You may also like:

Tahini Hummus

This recipe was shared at: 

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