This weekend, my husband and I stopped by a little Mexican restaurant and had some freshly-made jalapeno salsa on our tacos that blew us away (both in deliciousness and heat)! It inspired me to whip up my own version.
This salsa certainly isn’t for the faint of heart – it packs quite a punch, even after I removed three-quarters of the seeds. If having a firestorm in your mouth isn’t your idea of fun, I suggest removing all of the jalapeno seeds and ribs for a flavorful, yet tolerable, hint of Mexican-style heat.
This appetizer combines sweet mini pepper boats and cilantro-lime infused Greek yogurt with the salsa to absorb quite a bit of heat and enhance the flavor tremendously. I used Greek yogurt instead of sour cream because although it tastes very similar, it has about 50% fewer calories, 75% less fat, and 4 times as much protein.
Hint – consider using rubber gloves when handling this many jalapenos. Do not touch your eyes, nose, lips or anything else you don’t want burned from the pepper’s juice. You’ve been warned!
For those following Dr. Fuhrman’s Eat To Live program, this complies with the life plan. If you leave out the Greek yogurt dip, it also complies with the weight loss plan (but I think you need to the yogurt to balance out the heat).
Ingredients (serves 12 – about 3 to 4 mini peppers per serving)
½ pound whole jalapenos
1 pound mini sweet bell peppers
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
6 – 8 large garlic cloves
½ cup chopped cilantro
½ cup fresh lime juice (divided)
1 cup Greek yogurt
Salt to taste
1. Cut the jalapenos in half and remove the ribs and seeds and place them cut-side down on a baking sheet. Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and peel the garlic and add them to the baking sheet. Sprinkle with a light dusting of salt. Place under the broiler for 7 – 10 minutes until skins are charred.
2. While the jalapenos are broiling, use a sharp knife to cut off top third of each mini pepper to create a boat. Remove any seeds.
3. Remove jalapenos from the oven and allow to cool until they can be handled. Peel as much of the charred skin off the jalapenos as possible – it doesn’t have to be perfect. Some people like to place the peppers in a paper bag while hot to allow the steam to loosen the skin. I don’t find this is necessary, but feel free to give that technique a try.
4. Roughly chop the jalapenos and place them in a food processor with the tomatoes and garlic. Add in ¼ cup of chopped cilantro and ¼ cup of lime juice. Pulse until you achieve the desired consistency, which should be well blended, but still have chunks of the individual ingredients. Salt to taste.
6. Using a small spoon, fill the pepper boats with the salsa and drizzle the yogurt mixture on top. Place the remaining yogurt in a dish for extra dipping sauce.
7. Serve chilled.