Patty collects recipes and gadgets from the past and is interested in early American history, the Civil War, and the 19th century.
Indigenous Recipes From The Incas
Salsa is popularly known as a sauce or dip for Mexican foods. It originated with the indigenous Inca Native Mexicans, along with the Mayans and the Aztecs, long ago and was made from the freshest local ingredients. The best salsas are still made in this way. The flavors and the spiciness of these salsas varied with the region in which they were made, depending upon which of hot peppers were used and where they and the tomatoes were grown - in what types of soil.
The Spaniards that entered the Americas had not seen tomatoes until they met the Aztecs. These indigenous people routinely mixed locally grown tomatoes and hot peppers with ground up seeds from local squashes in order to make a sauce. The Aztecs used their spicy sauce with meats: turkey, deer and small game meats, and with local seafood - lobster and fishes.
The explorers liked this sauce very much and named it salsa in 1571 (named by Alonso de Molina).
North America got into the hot sauce and salsa act more fully in the early 1900s, with hot pepper sauces produced in and around New Orleans. Ideas and types of salsas and pepper sauces proliferated until the 21st century, when Campbells Soup Company bought out Pace Foods (see Campbell's history on the web). If you've seen the commercials for Pace sauces, you hear cowboys screech New York City!? about the Pace, only to find that it is good.
Salsa has become entertaining in it's a different way as well, in its names and associated companies --
Scorned Woman Salsa won 1st place in a hot food show and a catalogue of sauces and salsas is produced by Insane Chicken.
Recently, the Food Network put on an "experiment" to see who could stand the hottest pepper salsa and what other food could put out the fire. Everyone sweated while tasting, and only milk put out the flames, which thinks like carbonated soft drinks beer made the burn worse. Very interesting.
Just remember, when cutting up and seeding hot peppers, wear gloves, or your skin canned by burned by the pepper oils, not to mention your eyes. The latter happened to me one summer and I held my face under running water until the oils were washed away - about 20 minutes.
There are salsas and pepper sauces all through the western hemisphere at this point and nations in the other half of the world have always had their own sorts of spicy hot sauces. Fusion-inspired cooks and chefs experiment continually to come up with new styles. Some interesting recipes I have accumulated and blended appear below.
Best Salsas in America
Top 6 Commercial Salsas According to Food Network
Food Network's consumer survey discovered the most popular brands of salsa in America:
- SALSAS (3): Brad's Organic (mild),
- Rosa Mexicano Chile Pasillo de Oaxaca (medium hot) and
- Drew's Hot Organic (hot),
- PICANTES: Pace Picante Mild was found best picante sauce.
- CORN SALSA: Desert Pepper Trading Co.
- GREEN SALSA: Santa Fe Seasons Tomatillo.
Top 5 Healthy Salsas
The staff of Prevention Magazine performed a research study about foods in 2006. Their objective was to determine which salsas on the market are to be considered the healthiest while still tasting good.
The Prevention Magazine results:
- MILD: Green Mountain Gringo.
- MEDIUM: Herdez Medium Salsa Casera (This is my favorite! - Herdez is the bbest in red and green salsas in my opinion).
- HOT: Desert Pepper Trading Co.
- GREEN SALSA: Santa Barbara.
- BLACK BEAN SALSA: Newman's Own.
Cucumber Radish Salsa
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- ½ teaspoon honey
- 1/8 teaspoon dry mustard, or 1/2 teaspoon bottled prepared mustard
- 1/8 teaspoon EACH, salt and ground pepper
- ¼ cup red radishes sliced into thin rounds
- ¼ cup seeded cucumber cut into short matchsticks
- Pomegranate seeds as garnish, optional
- Mix altogether and serve as a garnish with pork, chicken, or cream soups.
- White radish gives this recipe a different flavor.
Mexican Garlic Orange Salsa
- 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
- 4 Large Chili peppers of your choice, washed & seeded
- 2 Garlic cloves peeled but while
- Salt to taste
- 3/4 Cup Orange Juice
- Heat the oil in a frying pan and stir-fry the peppers.
- Put fried chilies, garlic, salt, and orange juice into a blender and pulse breifly until coarse chopped.
- If the salsa is too thick, add more orange juice.
- Season with salt.
Note: This recipe can be added to chopped tomatoes to from a tomato-orange salsa. A few cut up mandarin orange slices add good texture.
- 1,12 oz bag fresh cranberries (you can keep them in the freezer and thaw them, but drain the melted water out)
- 4 Green onions, chopped, using the green parts as well
- 2 Jalapeno peppers, chopped fine
- 2/3 cup Sugar
- 1 Tbsp Crushed mint leaves
- 6 Tbsp Lime Juice
- 1/4 tsp Ground ginger
- Combine ALL ingredients at once and cover to chill in the refrigerator for 24 hours. It will keep for about 3 days.
Fast Garbanzo Salsa
- 1, 8 oz. Can Garbanzos
- 1/2 Cup Corn kernels, optional
- 1 Cup chopped Cilantro
- 1/3 Cup plain lo-fat Yogurt
- 1/3 Cup Green onion, chopped
- 1/4 Cup Lime Juice
- Salt & Pepper
- Drain the garbanzos and save juice for gravies.
- Puree garbanzos in a blender with the cilantro, yogurt, onions, and lime juice all at once.
- Add salt and pepper to taste
Cucumber Yogurt Salsa
- 1 Cup Dairy Sour Cream
- 1 Cup plain Yogurt
- 1/4 Cup chopped Parsley
- 1/4 Cup chopped Cilantro
- 1 tsp Cumin for smoky flavor
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 2 Medium sized Cucumbers, washed, seeded and shredded. Remove all of the peel first, or just part of it.
- Combine ingredients all at once and refrigerate covered for 2 hours.
© 2008 Patty Inglish MS
Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on October 09, 2012:
Glad to hear it! I love salsas of many kinds.
Melanie Procter on October 08, 2012:
I made the Aztec salsa. It is great.
Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on January 22, 2010:
Interesting, Daniel, because the photo was labeled Inca art. Perhaps a prank or error in a group of photos, but then, the Incan original ancestors came from Asia. I'm leaving it stand, in order to show similarities in cultures. Thanks.
Olmec heads in Mexico are very similar to this, freestanding.
Daniel on January 22, 2010:
The Inca Culture photo is evidently from the rare Asian Inca, specifically from the Angkor Wat temple complex in Cambodia.
Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on January 22, 2009:
salsanachos.com seems to be a legitimate company registered in Emeryville, California and its prices are very reasonable, with low shipping rates. If anyone orders form them, please let us know how they like the products.
Salsa Nachos on January 21, 2009:
Check out SalsaNachos http://www.salsanachos.com for more of your favorite hard to find Mexican Salsas!
Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on August 01, 2008:
Fresh peppers are marvelous! Thanks for trying my recipes. :)
Zsuzsy Bee from Ontario/Canada on August 01, 2008:
Patty! HMMM! Mexican Garlic Orange Salsa sounds fabulous. I'm waiting impatiently for my peppers in the garden to be ready for picking... I have that recipe earmarked to try...