So it’s Sunday here and I know, I usually don’t post on the weekend but Cinco de Mayo is coming and I wanted to post this with enough time for everyone to be able to make it! I was explaining the celebration to Japanese coworkers and realized we Americans really do like to party. One coworker commented that we celebrate Cinco de Mayo and St. Patty’s Day much more than the countries that they holidays are about. I think that just makes Americans crazy and fun.
Here in Japan the fifth of May is always a day they do Dragon Boat Racing, a Japanese tradition. I have to work on the fifth so I won’t get to go but it is cool to learn about their culture being over here. Sometimes working for the military is sad, not because I don’t get the fifth of July to watch Dragon Boat races. You make friends and they move to the next duty station just as you were really getting to know each other. Luckily, with Facebook and social media, it’s easy to keep in touch with these people. Our friend Alberto Alvarez was from Mexico City and once when he came over, we had the pleasure of him cooking for us. He didn’t use any recipes, he just showed us how his grandmother and mother taught him to make salsa, tortillas, and all kinds of things I don’t remember the names of. He should have his own cooking show because he has the looks and the charm to be a Food Network champion. He has these dimples and an eight pack, all the young girls go crazy.
So when Alberto was showing us how to make the salsa, one thing in particular was key. Burning the tomatoes and jalapenos. It gives this simple salsa a little more depth and smokiness. We need that in this recipe because we don’t use a lot of spices. The flavors of tomato, onion, jalapeno, and garlic are straightforward and fresh. I used two jalapeños and I would probably call it medium to hot. One would probably be a mild to medium. Definitely do a taste test before you do anything risky like adding a third jalapeño. Any time you add jalapeno seeds you get something hot. Enjoy and maybe take it to your Cinco de Mayo party coming up! Authentic Mexican guaranteed.
- 6 medium Roma tomatoes
- ½ Tablespoon olive oil
- ¾ cup finely chopped white onion, more to garnish
- 1-2 jalapeños
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- juice of 1 lime
- ½ tsp salt
- cilantro for garnish
- In a skillet over medium heat, add the olive oil. After heating for a couple minutes, place the tomatoes and jalapeños in the skillet. It will take 10-20 minutes for the tomatoes to cook. Turn the tomatoes occasionally. We want charred black spots on all sides and for the tomatoes to become soft. The jalapeños will take less time than the tomatoes so they should be removed while the tomatoes continue to cook.
- Keep the skins on the tomatoes and jalapeños. Add tomatoes, jalapeños, minced garlic, chopped white onion, lime juice, and salt to blender. Blend for a minute to two until well blended. Taste and add more lime juice or salt if needed.
- Place in a serving bowl and garnish with extra onion and cilantro.