Labor Day weekend lived up to its name at our house this year. We labored our way through the first few check marks on our annual fall project to-do list; with the help of family and friends, we labored our way closer to completing our deck; and I labored in the kitchen, canning my way through several flats of tomatoes. I went back to work today feeling productive, accomplished, and a little bit tired (the last jars came out of the canner at 10:00 last night.
It was a marathon weekend, but all of that work will be well worth it in just a few short weeks when we can finally relax on our new deck and pop the seal on a jar of this amazing salsa.
A combination of Costoluto Genovese and Japanese Black Trifeletomatoes gave this batch of salsa a rich tomato flavor and a beautiful deep red color, a perfect background for yellow kernels of sweet corn, green pieces of peppers, and a little diced red onion.
As you should always do with canning-safe recipes, I closely followed the original recipe and only made a few safe adaptations. The original recipe called for dicing the tomatoes for a chunky salsa, but the tomatoes that were most in need of attention were a bit juicier than the paste tomatoes I usually use for salsa (and I’m a big fan of the thick and hearty salsas that stick to your chip), so instead of dicing the tomatoes, I quartered them and tossed them in the stock pot to cook down into a deliciously rich tomato base before adding in the corn, onions, peppers, and garlic.
That’s the great thing about making salsa for canning. Like it stick-to-your-chip thick? Skip the dicing and simply cook those tomatoes down for an hour or two for a thick and smooth tomato base. Prefer it chunky with juices dripping down your chin? Dice the tomatoes and bring the pot just to a boil.
This is definitely a mild – even sweet tasting – salsa, but as someone who usually likes a little lingering heat in her salsa, this stuff is delicious (like, sit down and eat it right of the jar with a spoon, delicious). If you want to turn up the heat a bit, substitute hotter peppers for some of the bell pepper (as long as you don’t increase the overall total amount of pepper for acidity purposes).
12 ears of sweet corn
5 pounds of tomatoes
2 jalapeno peppers
1 green bell pepper
1 large onion
2 cloves of garlic, minced.
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon salt
½ cup fresh cilantro
Peel and core tomatoes. For a thicker salsa, quarter tomatoes and start to cook them down in a large stock pot. For a chunkier salsa, dice tomatoes and set aside.
Clean and dice peppers and onion and set aside.
Clean and shuck ears of corn while bringing a pot of water to a rolling boil. Add the corn and bring the water back to a boil for 5 minutes. Transfer ears of corn into a sink filled with cold water.
Carefully cut the corn kernels from the cob when the ears are cool enough to handle.
Combine the tomatoes, corn, peppers, and onion in the large stock pot. Add garlic, sugar, cumin, and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes, then stir in the cilantro and briefly return to a boil before removing from heat.
Add ¼ teaspoon of citric acid to each sterilized jar and fill, leaving ½ inch headspace. Process in a hot water bath for 15 minutes, then remove the lid from the canner and allow jars to rest in the water for 5 additional minutes before removing.
*Note: I prefer using citric acid in place of vinegar in canned salsa recipes – if you would prefer to use vinegar, add 3 cups of distilled white vinegar (5% acidity) when combining all ingredients
Yield: 8 pints