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Hot Tomato Salsa

 

Not too long ago, I wrote about my challenge with returning produce in an article called Rotten Grapes and Ripped Jeans. I have never been one to return produce. When rotten produce brings an infestation of fruit flies into my home I am just going to have to say something.

A couple of weeks ago, I had picked up a large amount of tomatoes from the farmer's market so that I could make Grandma Meghan’s Secret Tomato Sauce. When I got home and started unloading everything, those tomaytees were good and rotten. The next time I was at the market, I did complain, only because the guys who run that stall flirt with me, so that made it easier. They gave me a whole batch of new tomatoes, and yeppers, I unpacked them when I got home and they were again rottenalicious- with these deep bruises on them that days later started splitting open, making superb breeding ground for more fruit flies.

Something needed to be done with these tomaytees, and quickly. I asked around for some ideas and narrowed it down to tomato soup or tomato salsa. Josh had suggested I go with the soup, so the cooking of the tomatoes would free up the lycopene. Well, you know what won.

Lycopene is something that is found in certain fruits and vegetables that the bod uses as an antioxidant.The most common benefit is prostate protection, but ladies, all the ladies... gather around- cause some of them have nothing to do with men's health.

  • Cancer prevention; especially prostate cancer, mouth cancer, and others.
  • Guards against aging of the skin.
  • Helps with problems such as diabetes and cardiovascular system issues and disease.
  • May prevent osteoporosis.
  • Can assist with fertility problems in men.

Like all nutrients, tomatoes are of course not the only source of lycopene. This phytonutrient likes to chill out in other pink/red fruits and veg too like pink grapefruit, watermelon, guava, rosehips and papaya. But since most those others don't grow on trees (or vines as the case may be) around these parts, tomatoes it is!  Cooking and crushing tomatoes helps free up the bioavailable lycopene, meaning the lycopene that our body can absorb and use.

To keep that lycopene free and ready, I chose to experiment with a Spicy Roasted Tomato Salsa.

IMG_7026

The Roof Is On Fiya Roasted Tomato Salsa

10-12 Roma tomatoes (with rotten bits cut out if necessary- see tale above), cut in quarters lengthwise
1 medium onion, cut into six wedges, and parts separated
4 cloves of garlic clove, halved
a couple pinches of finely ground sea salt
2-3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
1 red or yellow bell pepper, sliced in quarters
cayenne to taste (how hot can you handle?)

  • Heat oven to 400F degrees.
  • Toss together all ingredients except cayenne
  • Arrange veggies in a single layer in a glass baking dish or roasting pan, or parchment lined baking sheet
  • Roast in the oven for 25-30 minutes
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.
  • Puree about two tomatoes with the roasted garlic
  • Chop remaining tomatoes by hand or in food processor and add cayenne to taste.Now, go get your dancing shoes and jazz hands our of storage. Ole, Ole, Ole! Feeling  hot, hot, hot!
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrhf_zgtmAg]

19 Responses to “Hot Tomato Salsa”

  1. Nicole said… October 27, 2009
    I was wondering what you ended up doing with all those tomatoes! This sounds delish and perfect for dealing with badly bashed up tomatoes
  2. Looks like a great salsa recipe! I think I'd add a hot pepper to heat things up a little more though!
  3. Oooh, not very hot for me, that cayenne is a killer! Looks good though, so lusciously read!
  4. This looks great... but what do you eat it with? You're kind of anti-tortilla chip, aren't you?
  5. Brittany said… October 27, 2009
    Looks delish! It continually amazes me how combining a handful of the right simple ingredients can bring out such complex flavors. Just out of curiosity, why didn't you add the cayenne before roasting? I ask because awhile back, I made raw chili with a few generous dashes of cayenne, and I could hardly taste it. My boyfriend decided to nuke his portion, and he said the cayenne must've woken up in the microwave because he got a HUGE kick after it was warm. Usually I'm the one who is a weenie about spicy things!
  6. Im printing this one out to try. Ive been craving tomatoes ever since the 5 day vegan challenge. No idea why as I never liked them my whole life. Suddenly I am putting them into everything! Tomatoes, and lemons. How bizarre.
  7. I love hot, hot, hot! And I'm glad you went with the cooked tomatoes--that way, you kill any of those leftover fruit fly larvae (ugh!).
  8. Amanda said… October 28, 2009
    A very clever way not to waste produce. Good work. I don't like things too hot. I'm such a wimp that I thought I had an allergy to anything hot! (I don't. Like I said, I'm just a wimp). But given my cultural background, I'm used to adding a ton of garlic to everything for an extra kick! (My grandparents are from Lebanon).
  9. Just leave it out. I put loads in. Someone in my life hearts cayenne- must have been on my mind.
  10. Oh Thistle... what about rice crackers, or Mary's, or Chip chips (made from toasting brown rice tortillas), or on eggs.... do I have to go on?

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