The reason I’ve never shared my salsa recipes is because salsa is one of the home canned foods that’s a bit controversial. UGA has the National Center for Home Food Preservation and they have a recipe here. The Ball Blue Book has several recipes and I trust them. The problem with salsa is that you’re mixing acidic foods and non-acidic foods and canning in a water bath. If you want to make and can your own recipe, I’d recommend using the UGA recipe or one of the Blue Book recipes. If you want to make a batch, keep it in the fridge for a few days and eat it all up, do anything you want.
Having said that . . I make salsa every year. Have for at least 8 or 10 years and we’re all still alive and kicking. You know what will happen this year now that I’ve made that bold statement! 🙁
I’m especially not comfortable canning quarts of salsa with the water bath method. The 4 quarts I canned the other night, I canned under pressure but in doing a bit of research for this post, I’m not even sure I’m comfortable with that so I stuck those 4 quarts in the fridge and have canned the rest of my salsa in pints using the water bath method.
As far as the recipe, I don’t use a recipe. Sorry! I tried to measure and write everything down as I was making it but I just couldn’t remember to do it. One thing that is certain — For every 5 pounds of tomatoes, I use 1 cup of cider vinegar and 1/2 cup of lime juice. I weigh the tomatoes after they’re peeled and cored. After that, it’s pretty much personal preference. For every 5 pounds of cored and peeled tomatoes, I add the following .. in approximately these amounts.
Place the tomatoes in a pot that will not boil over when the ingredients begin boiling. I quarter the tomatoes, quarter 3 medium onions, quarter 5 or 6 jalapeno peppers, add 2 tablespoons of chopped garlic (I buy mine already chopped). Add 1 cup cider vinegar and 1/2 cup lime juice. Simmer all this for an hour or two, depending on how much liquid is in your tomatoes and how thick you want your salsa.
Once the salsa is about as thick as you want it, I add 2 finely chopped red onions and 2 cups of chopped cilantro. Add 1 tablespoon salt. Bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Pour into hot jars, place lids on and process in water bath canner for 15 minutes.
The only thing I do different when making salsa verde is I use tomatillos instead of tomatoes. They don’t have as much liquid so I really don’t have to do much more than bring them to a boil and then simmer for 15 minutes. I do not add the chopped red onion and I do add the cilantro in the beginning with the other ingredients. Also, I add 2 teaspoons of cumin to the salsa verde.
Basically, as long as you’re adding the vinegar and lime juice in the proper proportions, just add whatever seasonings and herbs make you happy.