Wayne's Weekend: A Trio Of Salsas

Make tomatillo, black bean and tomato tequila salsa for your next party.

As temperatures slowly start to rise, it’s time to start thinking about outdoor entertaining.  I recently spent an unusually warm afternoon at my friend Joey Chiappetta’s and we sat on the deck and enjoyed a casual nosh of chips and salsas.  Two of the salsas Joey made were a charred tomatillo and a black bean chipotle.  He was happy to share the recipes, so I decided to add one to the mix that contrasted the spiciness of his.  Mine, which is a tomato tequila version, includes a bit of brown sugar for some sweetness.  All three compliment each other and should be served with a few different types chips to add to the variety. 

Tomato Tequila Salsa

3 lb Roma Tomatoes       
1 med White Onion, diced
1 lg Jalapeño, stem removed, split and seeded
4 cloves Garlic, smashed peeled and diced
1 tbl Brown Sugar
2 tbl Tequila
1 tsp Ground Cumin
1/2 tsp Chili Powder
1/2 tsp Pepper
1 tsp Salt        
3 tbl Fresh Lime Juice
1/4 cup Fresh Cilantro, chopped


Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Score an “X” on the bottom end of each tomato.  Place tomatoes in the boiling water, a few at a time, for 30-40 seconds.  Remove and allow to cool.  Peel the skin off of the tomatoes.  Discard skin.  Finely chop 1-2 of the tomatoes to yield 1 cup.  Set aside.  Roughly chop the remaining tomatoes and place in a food processor.  Reserve about 1/2 cup of the diced onions and place the remainder in the food processor along with the jalapeño and garlic.  Pulse the processor until ingredients are well blended but still a bit chunky.  Transfer to a large pot and add sugar, tequila, cumin, chili powder, pepper and salt.  Bring to a boil then immediately turn down to a low simmer.  Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.  Remove from heat, transfer to a bowl and cool completely.  Add reserved tomatoes, onions, lime juice and cilantro.  Chill, check for seasoning and serving with tortilla chips.

Charred Tomatillo Salsa
courtesy of Joey Chiappetta


2lb Tomatillos, husks discarded, then washed and dry tomatillos
1 med White Onion, large dice
2 cloves Garlic, peeled, left whole
1 Jalapeño Pepper, stem removed
1/2 Serrano Pepper, stem removed
1tbl Vegetable Oil
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Pepper

Finishing Items:
1 tbl fresh Lime Juice
1/4 cu White Onion, small dice
1/4 cu Cilantro, chopped


Preheat broiler on high heat.  Place rack in the top 1/3 position of the oven.  Place tomatillos, onion, garlic, jalapeño & serrano on a sheet tray.  Drizzle with oil and mix together to coat all ingredients.  Season with salt and pepper.  Place under the broiler and let the ingredients char, about 5 minutes.  Flip the ingredients and char on the other side, about another 4-5 minutes.  You don't want the ingredients completely blackened, but you do want some decent color on them.  After broiling, split pepper and remove seeds if you don’t want the extra heat.  Then, puree all ingredients in a blender or food processor.  Place in a bowl to cool.

Once cooled, add fresh lime juice, onion & cilantro to the mixture.  If the salsa is too thick, it's okay to add some water to get it to a proper consistency.  Chill, check for seasoning and serve with tortilla chips.

Chipotle Black Bean Dip
courtesy of Joey Chiappetta


1 med White Onion, medium dice
2 cloves of Garlic, Minced
1 can Tomato Paste, 6oz size
2 cans Black Beans, 14oz size, rinsed and drained
2 Dried Chipotle Peppers
1/4 cu White Vinegar
1tbl Vegetable Oil
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Pepper


Cut off the stems of the chipotle peppers and break them open.  Remove the seeds if you want to reduce the heat of this salsa.  Place the peppers in a small bowl and cover with water for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, sweat the onion and garlic in the vegetable oil for 5-8 minutes over medium heat.  Add tomato paste and cook for 2 more minutes.  Add black beans, vinegar, salt and peppers.  Add chipotle peppers and their soaking water.  Fill the pot with enough additional water to just cover the beans.  Simmer for 20 minutes.  Puree in blender or food processor.  Chill, check for seasoning and serve with tortilla chips.

Thanks again to Joey Chiappetta for sharing his recipes.  They are great.  If you have any comments or questions, please send me an email at wayne@waynesweekend.com or follow me on Facebook or Twitter.

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