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Rutland Area Farm and Food Link (RAFFL) promotes local food knowledge, production and market opportunities for farmers and community members throughout our region.

Blueberry, Basil & Jalapeno Salsa

RAFFL Updates

News, cooking tips, recipes, and more from the Rutland Area Farm and Food Link.

Blueberry, Basil & Jalapeno Salsa

Steve Peters

226

226 As strawberry season faded in the last few weeks, I quickly turned my attention to blueberries - my all time favorite berry. And once again, I'm looking for some creative uses for experimenting and sharing with you - at least the successes. With blueberries now in season, and pick your own sites offering some of the lowest prices, there's every reason to take incorporate berries into your diet on a daily basis - especially with all the studies suggesting that blueberries have some amazing benefits to our health. I could sure use some help with my memory.

What was I talking about? Oh, right. It's useful to learn new ways to use familiar ingredients. That way, you don't get fatigued on something after just a few days. Though, if you just stock up and freeze your berries for use throughout the year, that's good too.

Even though blueberries are the focus right now, that doesn't mean I'm disregarding the awesome amount of produce that's flourishing right now. Often, I find the most interesting uses for fruit to be savory, not sweet. With this simple salsa jalapenos, basil, garlic and red onion pair with the berries for a spicy-sweet flavor.

It takes just a few minutes to get everything ready and toss in the food processor. A blender could work just as well too. Despite what many people think, comparatively speaking, jalapenos are relatively mild. Take a look at this pepper scale from www.liveinthenow.com. Jalapenos fall in between poblanos and cayenne peppers. And there's a big difference between jalapenos compared and habaneros, which are much, much hotter. But there's nothing wrong with a little heat. In fact, capsaicin benefits the heart.

If you're hesitant, I suggest starting out with less. It's much easier to add heat than to remove it. Start with just a 1/4 of a jalapeno if you're really cautious. Or, use half and add the second half if it's too mild for you. Note: remove the seeds of the pepper for less heat. Just slowly slide the edge of your knife across the inside of the pepper.

While you enjoy this simply as a snack with corn tortilla chips, it would pair fantastically with grilled pork chops or pork tacos. As the recipe suggests, try simmering for a few minutes to reduce the amount of liquid if you do decide to use in a taco.

 

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