I’ve heard it said that the art of French Cuisine is in the sauces. With that in mind I decided to start experimenting with sauces closer to my home in Mexico, aka salsas. It took a while for me to realize that the translation of salsa is simply sauce and it isn’t confined to the chopped tomato/cilantro/chile/lime salsa cruda. I think it is fair to say that salsas are also the heart of Mexican cuisine. This creamy jalapeño salsa is quick and easy to make, delicious, and surprisingly refreshing.
Two special notes on preparation:
– The easiest way to peel garlic is to chop off both ends then smash the garlic using the flat side of a knife blade under the heel of your hand.
– Allowing the garlic and lime to “stew” for a while helps to mellow out the garlic.
CREAMY JALAPEÑO SALSA
About 1¼ cups
4 garlic cloves, peeled, coarsely chopped
5 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (2-3 limes, depending on size)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
* 5-6 jalapeños stemmed, seeded, coarsely chopped – about 3 cups
½ cup vegetable oil
¾ cup packed fresh cilantro leaves with tender stems
* Feel free to use your choice of chile or any combination thereof
– Pulse the garlic, lime juice, and salt in a blender or food processor until puréed. Let stand 10 minutes. Add chiles and pulse until pureed. With motor running, slowly drizzle in oil until a thick sauce forms. Add cilantro and pulse a few times until chopped and incorporated
– Served chilled
– Sauce can be made up to 3 days in advance and refrigerated but it is best fresh