We dare you to try our deliciously different salsa. Through the first weeks of the tour, the Dining Daredevils have discovered how much we have in common in the kitchen. There are no picky eaters on this team, so this daringly delightful salsa is perfect for us. Hot chiles give plenty of heat, but cherries and orange provide some sweet. Cocoa powder adds an extra twist of adventurous flavor to a salsa that sums up our "try anything" attitudes. Posted for ZWT 5 Salsa Challenge. (Ingredient credits: tomatillos; yours truly, chiles; MarylandJim, garlic; DreamGoddess, black beans; tomsawyer, onions; SueVM, Bell Peppers; Studentchef, orange juice; MamiJanine, dried cherries; MichelleBerteig, cilantro; Hollygolightly.)
- 3⁄4 cup dried cherries
- 3⁄4 cup orange juice
- 1 ounce tequila
- 10 tomatillos
- 6 serrano chilies
- 1 head garlic, peeled
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1 sweet onion, half diced fine, half cut in wedges
- 1 orange bell pepper
- 1 (14 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 2⁄3 cup finely chopped cilantro
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- 1 cup orange grape tomatoes (optional)
- salt and black pepper
- Preheat oven to 425.
- Combine cherries, tequila, and orange juice in a microwave safe container, microwave on high 3 minutes. Set aside. These need to sit at least an hour, so start early.
- Quarter the tomatillos, cut the serrano chiles in half lengthwise, removing seeds and ribs, peel garlic cloves, and cut half of the onion into large wedges.
- Toss the tomatillos, chiles, onion, and garlic with oil, spread onto a nonstick baking sheet, and roast about 20 minutes, or until edges have browned lightly.
- Meanwhile, finely dice the other half of the onion and the bell pepper. Cut cherry tomatoes in half, and add these to a serving bowl. (The tomatoes were something I added in testing just because they were lying around, and we liked them. If you don't happen to have any, you can leave them out.).
- Rinse and drain the black beans, and add to the bowl with the onion and pepper.
- Finely chop cilantro and add to bowl.
- When the roasted vegetables are done, let them cool, then place in the bowl of a food processor along with a tablespoon or two of the orange juice from soaking the cherries. Pulse a few times until they're chopped up, but still a little chunky. Add to serving bowl.
- Drain the cherries, (reserve the juice, mixed with a little club soda, it's a great cocktail.) and add to salsa. Add chili powder, cocoa, salt and pepper. Mix well, and chill for at least an hour. The longer this sits, the better it gets. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips, or on top of fish or chicken.
Also subbed dried cranberries for the cherries and subbed red kidney beans - (home cooked from dried) for the black beans (can't get black beans where I Iive.) - a little too sour for my taste - maybe if not using cherries should add some sweetener e.g. brown sugar or honey - otherwise loved the whole concept - great with lamb and chicken in wraps so far - thanks for an interesting recipe.
This is awesome, and I'm not saying that because I was on your team when we were putting this together, but because all the ingredients here really worked well together. I just love everything together, and I think the orange juice added a nice touch to the recipe as well.
I loved it! I couldn't find dried cherries, so I substitued dried cranberries. I used the tequila, tomatillos, 1/2 the serrano chiles, for the other 1/2 I used jalapenos because I have too many from my garden! I loved roasting the vegetables to give the salsa a rich flavor. I didn't have orange grape tomatoes, just red ones, so I used those. The addition of cocoa was a great idea, and I think it is what really made the salsa. Thanks for posting! Made for ZWT5 for the Saucy Senoritas.