We Broke A Record
During the big 4th of July celebrations here in Philadelphia last week, there was an attempt to break the world record for largest salsa dance. In true Philly competitive (i.e., sports teams) fashion, we fell just a little bit short of the big trophy. But we did break the record for largest salsa dance lesson. Exciting, eh? Well, if nothing else, perhaps that’s what inspired me to make salsa (the edible kind) this week. But I think it had more to do with the amazing colors of the peppers and tomatoes at the farm that I was piling into my shirt tail. Looking down at my little makeshift pouch, I could practically taste the freshness of the flavors melding together when consumed with some extra crispy homemade tortilla chips.
I gathered up some basil from the farm and used it instead of the more traditional cilantro, which the farm isn’t growing at the moment. I really didn’t miss the cilantro at all. I might have added another hot pepper though if I hadn’t been such a wimp. I guess I’m still a little gun-shy after the eye-popping curried squash pickles, which, by the way, are still holding up nicely in my fridge. I’ve found both the pickles and the salsa (seperately, not together!) add a little zing to your common everyday burger.
By the way, about another rather unusual world record set within Philadelphia’s city limits…earlier this year in March, a man set the world record for most body piercings in a four hour period. Phillip Roomet officially inserted 1,047 into his upper body, kept them in for 10 minutes while he smoked a cigarette and then took them out!! It remains to be seen what kind of dish this particular record will inspire in my kitchen. In the meantime, I think I’d best go out and buy some skewers…
Farm Salsa with Homemade Tortilla Chips
3 purple peppers (or other colors)
4-5 tomatoes (variety of colors)
1 medium red onion
1 hot pepper (or more if you like heat)
1/4 c. chopped fresh basil
1/4 c. chopped fresh lemon balm
2 T. extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves of garlic, finely minced
salt and pepper
2 large flat breads
salt and pepper
dried herbs of choice
Start by combining the olive oil and juices from the limes and lemon in a large bowl. Wisk in salt, pepper and garlic until well blended. Set aside.
Dice tomatoes, peppers and onions. Place vegetables with chopped herbs in the bowl with the dressing. Toss together until everything is evenly distributed. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour and up to a day. Salsa will remain edible for up to three days but it starts to break down a bit and loose quality after the first 36 hours or so.
When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 375 F. Using foil or a baking sheet, spray both sides of a flat bread (or flour tortilla if you can’t find the heartier flat bread) with cooking spray. Lay on baking sheet and sprinkle on salt, pepper and dried herbs evenly. Bake for 7-10 minutes until bread is golden and crisp. Remove from oven and let cool for a minute before roughly breaking the bread into “chips”. Serve along side salsa.
Note: I like my homemade salsa chips more rustic and unorthodox. If you prefer more structure to yours, just cut the flat bread into triangles before placing it in the oven for nice even-sized chips.
(makes 8-10 servings)