Black Jalapeno Salsa

Jalapenos are the most popular chile peppers in the US. This is probably due to the availability and versatility of the chile. Jalapenos have a balanced combination of flavor and heat.

The demand for these have caused breeders to develop a broad range of varieties. You can now get jalapenos with various heat level and sizes. These can be used in salsas, stuffed, or eaten straight with cheeseburgers (my personal favorite).

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2 (1/2-inch) slices red onion
4 garlic cloves, peeled
2 tsp dried Mexican oregano
1/4 cup olive oil
12 jalapeno chiles, stemmed, seeded, and halved
3 Anaheim chiles, stemmed, seeded, and halved
Juice of 2 limes
1/2 tsp coarse salt


Heat a cast-iron skillet over high heat. Add the onion slices and char, separating them into rings. Remove from the pan. Toast the garlic until it begins to brown in spots, then add the oregano, cook for a minute, and remove from the pan.

Add the olive oil to the skillet and sear the chiles, turning until evenly charred.

Transfer the chiles, with the onion, garlic, and oregano, to a food processor. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse process until smooth. Store in a plastic container in the refrigerator 2 to 3 days.

Makes about 1 1/2 cups.

From Cooking With Two Hot Tamales by Milliken and Feniger.