Thursday, September 24, 2015

Roasted Tomato and Chipotle Salsa

It's that time of year.  Summer is winding down and the garden is bounteous. Most years I have a good tomato crop but this year seems to be a difficult year.  I have lots of plants but my tomatoes aren't turning green!! Fresh tomatoes are my favorite part of summer and having a garden.  I hope they start turning quickly before the weather does.  Typically around here, they're done the first week of October so that doesn't give us very long.  Lucky for me, there are several produce stands around here that sell local tomatoes by the box.  I usually hit them up once or twice a season so I have enough to put up for the winter and through next year. We love to can spaghetti sauce and tomatoes for soup and, of course salsa!!

It's been a few years since I canned salsa and we are sorely missing it!!  I found this Restaurant Style Salsa to hold us over in the mean time, but there's nothing like the taste of salsa made from home grown tomatoes. This roasted variety will blow your socks off (especially if you use a lot of chipotles!!). I love the smokiness of the roasted tomatoes and chipotles, it's seriously the best-tasting salsa that's come out of this kitchen in a LONG time!

Roasted Tomato and Chipotle Salsa
1 quart roasted Roma tomatoes
3/4 cup diced tomatoes
1/3 cup onion, diced
1/4 cup Anaheim pepper, diced
1/3 cup jalapeƱo peppers, diced
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1/2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 1/2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
1 Tbsp. salt
1/2 Tbsp. sugar
chipotles in adobo, seeded
1/2 cup lime juice
1/2 cup vinegar

Rinse tomatoes, slice off top and cut in half.  Place cut side down on a baking sheet and place under broiler.  Broil until tomatoes start to blacken.  Remove from oven and slightly cool.

Add all ingredients into a blender and enough chipotles to suit your taste. Blend to desired consistency. Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary.

Store in airtight container in the fridge or process in boiling water bath canner for 15 minutes.

**If you are not planning on canning the salsa you can omit the vinegar and reduce the lime juice to 1-2 tablespoons.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Buttermilk Waffles

Nevermind that I have salsa recipes from the summer to still post, let's move right along to fall with these waffles!!  I have been waiting to make these for a couple weeks.  I LOVE just about everything the fall brings, especially pumpkin chocolate chip.  One of my favorite combos.  These are pretty much my regular buttermilk waffles, with a little extra fall punch, so not a ton of work.  These are perfect for Sunday brunch with friends or family because they make a HUGE plateful.  But even if you don't have company, they keep really well.  I like to just throw them in the freezer and pull them out when we want them.  When you're ready to eat, just toss them in the toaster and they'll warm up nice and good.  I like to serve them with pumpkin maple syrup or cinnamon sugar sprinkled on top. Sometimes I even sprinkle the cinnamon sugar on top of the batter in the waffle iron.  (If you do this, make sure you spray it with cooking spray so it doesn't stick.)

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Buttermilk Waffles
2 cups buttermilk
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 Tbsp. vanilla
4 eggs, separated
3 Tbsp. sugar
6 Tbsp.  unsalted butter, melted
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2-3/4 cup chocolate chips

Melt butter and set aside to cool slightly. Preheat waffle iron.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together buttermilk, pumpkin, vanilla, sugar and egg yolks. Slowly whisk in melted butter. In a separate bowl, stir together the remaining dry ingredients then gently stir them in with the wet ingredients until just incorporated.

In a separate mixing bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. With a spatula, gently fold them into the batter until almost incorporated, add the chocolate chips then fold in a few more times.  NOTE: Egg whites do not have to be completely incorporated, just mostly.

Pour batter onto waffle iron and cook according to manufacturer's directions.  Serve with choice of toppings: pumpkin maple syrup, syrup, cinnamon sugar, or powdered sugar.

Pumpkin Maple Syrup:
4 Tbsp. pumpkin puree
6 Tbsp. pure maple syrup
splash of vanilla
pinch of cinnamon

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