Easy Homemade Salsa

A note from Tiffany: This is a post from contributing writer, Rachael. It’s been a while since she’s had a recipe post for us, but she is the one who puts everything together for the Traditional version of the Weekly Meal Plans. Rachael and her family lost their home to fire on Saturday. Thankfully, they are all safe. Please keep Rachael, her husband and their two little ones in your prayers. They are hanging on to this verse. “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
—James 1:2–4

EasyHomemadeSalsa

Want to know why I will never buy salsa again? That’s easy – it’s because I will always make it myself from here on out!

Recently a good friend of mine passed along a salsa recipe. You can find that recipe here. I tweaked the recipe and love how it turned out so I had to share with you.

Here is my recipe but just know you can customize it completely to fit your needs. You could skip the jalapeno if you don’t like spicy. You could add black beans or corn to have a different spin. If you like it chunky just add an extra can of diced tomatoes at the end. So many ideas!

Easy Homemade Salsa

What you need:

  • 1 can of whole tomatoes 28 – 32 oz, drained
  • 1 red onion, quartered
  • a couple garlic cloves whole or minced (whatever you have)
  • 2 Tbsp of lime
  • 2 tsp of salt
  • 2 tsp of cumin
  • a large handful of fresh cilantro (I used almost a whole bunch)
  • 1 can of jalapenos (I used a 4 oz can)

What to do:

Put everything in a food processor and blend until consistency is like you prefer. Serve chilled!

Note – this salsa is best once it sits together a bit in the fridge. Also, I not sure how long it lasts but it has been gone in 4-5 days in my house.

Easy Homemade Salsa

Ingredients

  • 1 can of whole tomatoes 28 - 32 oz, drained
  • 1 red onion, quartered
  • a couple garlic cloves whole or minced (whatever you have)
  • 2 Tbsp of lime
  • 2 tsp of salt
  • 2 tsp of cumin
  • a large handful of fresh cilantro (I used almost a whole bunch)
  • 1 can of jalapenos (I used a 4 oz can)

Instructions

  1. Put everything in a food processor and blend until it's the desired consistency you like best. Serve chilled.
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Rachael Walkup has been married to her best friend for 8 years. They have two kids – a 4 yr old boy and a 2 yr old  little girl. She loves to write, cook, spend time with family, and serve others. You can learn more about her by following along on twitter, her blog, or pinterest.

Simple Lettuce Wedge Salad – a salad for people who hate to make salad

Simple Lettuce Wedge Salad

 

I’ve seen lettuce wedge salads around recently on blogs and restaurant menus.  Honestly, I wondered what the big deal was or why anyone would want one.  I mean, it’s just iceberg lettuce.

Then a friend ordered a lettuce wedge salad when we went out to eat for book club.  I was sitting next to her and I really wanted to ask for a bite.  It looked amazing!  I refrained from asking for a taste.  Elizabeth might have thought I was a bit nutty if I’d made that request.

Then one day, I decided to make one at home.  And I discovered that this is the perfect salad for me to make.  I hate cleaning and tearing romaine lettuce.  And I’m not a fan of the stems on spinach so I end up tearing all of those off.

But with a lettuce wedge, you just rinse the head, tear off the weird and wilted outer leaves and chop.  Two or three cuts with a sharp knife and the lettuce is ready to go!

I like to add chopped tomatoes, bacon bits and a drizzle of ranch dressing.  If I’ve got croutons, I’ll add those too.

And for reasons I can’t explain, these salads taste like so much more than the sum of their parts.  It really is better than if I served it as a tossed salad.  Maybe it stays crisper?

Whatever the reason, these are good!  Give them a try with a meal soon.

Ranch Meatballs and Pasta – 15 Minute Meal

We love Hidden Valley Ranch dressing.  So when they asked if I’d like to create a new recipe using it, I jumped at the chance.

This time, I decided to give pasta and meatballs a little Western twist with tomatoes and green chilis and a packet of Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix.

This can be made in the time it takes to boil the pasta.  That makes it a 15 minutes meal and you know I love those!

Here’s what you’ll need:   [Read more...]

Italian Chicken with Tomatoes in the Crock-Pot

This was a lovely meal to come home from church to eat.  And it was easy to put together before church too.  You can start marinating the chicken the night before or just give it 20-30 minutes to marinate right before cooking.  The choice is yours.  Do what works best with your schedule.

I did take the extra step of browning the chicken before adding it the the Crock-Pot.  The browning adds a depth of flavor to the dish.  But if you’re in a hurry, you can skip that step.

I made this recipe in my new programmable Crock-Pot.  Crock-Pot now has a fun new option called Create-A-Crock.  You can choose from many different backgrounds and patterns.  And you can upload your own photos too!  It’s a fun way to make a one of a kind Crock-Pot.  I chose a simple black damask background for mine and added 4 family photos – 2 on the front and 2 in back.

There are several sizes and styles of Crock-Pot available in the Create-A-Crock. line.  All of them can be customized the way you want.

Here’s what you’ll need:

Serve this dish with garlic cream cheese mashed potatoes or pasta with Parmesan.  Either one will be a perfect combination with the Italian chicken and tomatoes.

Italian Chicken with Tomatoes in the Crock-Pot

Yield: 6-8 servings

Italian Chicken with Tomatoes in the Crock-Pot

Ingredients

  • 3-4 lbs. boneless chicken breast
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 4 Tbs. red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. basil
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 15 oz can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup Italian blend shredded cheese

Instructions

  1. Place chicken in shallow dish.
  2. Whisk together all ingredients except tomatoes and cheese.
  3. Pour marinade over chicken. Refrigerate for 20-30 minutes or up to overnight.
  4. Brown chicken in olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.
  5. Place chicken in Crock-Pot.
  6. Add tomatoes to skillet, stirring to scrape up browned bits.
  7. Pour over chicken in Crock-Pot.
  8. Cook on low for 7-8 hours or high for 5-6 hours.
  9. Top with shredded cheese.
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Disclosure: I have been compensated for my time and have also received a Crock-Pot.  All opinions are my own.

Pesto Bruschetta Spread

Lately, we’ve fallen into a lovely routine of family dinners after church.  Even though all of our kids still live at home, the oldest two are busy with work, school and activities.  We often don’t see our daughter for several days, other than passing each other at breakfast.  And our son, who is a senior in high school is often working or busy with other things.

Family dinners are much rarer than they used to be.

But lately, we’ve all been home for Sunday lunch after church.  Most weeks, our daughter’s boyfriend joins us too.  I love having everyone gathered around the table, catching up with each other.

Last Sunday, I decided to try out a new slow cooker recipe for an Italian style chicken dish (recipe coming soon).  This Pesto Bruschetta Spread seemed the perfect thing to serve with it.

Everyone loved it!  It’s creamy and full of flavor, thanks to the PHILADELPHIA Creamy Pesto Cooking Creme.  The tomatoes on top were a perfect pairing with the pesto and cheese.  They’re big enough that the picky people could dip around them, leaving more for the tomato lovers.

This was quick to make, which made it doable for after church.  Here’s what you’ll need:   [Read more...]

Quick and Easy – Tomato Basil Chicken Soup

This is the soup that made me wish I owned an immersion blender.

Alas, I don’t have one.  But even without smoothing out the soup base, this dish is a winner.  It’s creamy and full of the summery flavor of tomatoes and basil.  The chicken adds heartiness and keeps the boys from whining for meat.

And if you’ve got cooked chicken in the freezer, this soup only takes a few minutes to make.  I love a quick meal!

Here’s what you’ll need:  [Read more...]

Kentucky Hot Brown Bake

kentucky hot brown bake

This is not your traditional Kentucky Hot Brown.  If you’ve ever had the real deal, then you already know that.  If you’ve never had a Hot Brown, here’s a description for you:  Turkey, bacon, tomato on toast, served under so much cheese sauce that you can’t find the sandwich.  Amazing!

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Click the image below:

 

This bake is adapted from a recipe I found via Pinterest on Mr. Food for Italian Layer Bake.  I adapted the layers to make it a KY Hot Brown Bake.

This bake is easy to put together, although you do need to allow time for it to bake and set a few minutes before serving.  It’s delicious, with gooey cheese and bacon.  Everyone in the family loved this one.

Here’s what you’ll need:  [Read more...]

Skillet Chicken, Peppers & Tomatoes

A few weeks ago I decided to make a recipe from Feast in 15.  But I didn’t have any cooked chicken in the freezer.  And it was way too hot to grill that day.  So I decided to use the skillet instead.

The result was an entirely new recipe.  I used chicken marinated in soy sauce and Italian dressing.  A quick thaw in the microwave and it was ready to go.  Browning the chicken in the skillet and then adding the veggies made for a tasty sauce, perfect for serving over couscous or pasta.

I don’t have an ingredient photo for you this time, because I thought I was making a recipe I’d already shared in Feast in 15.  Sometimes something new sneaks up on you.  [Read more...]

Fried Green Tomatoes (and many other Southern foods too!)

Our summer road trip from the kitchen series has taken us to New England and the Mid-Atlantic states.  Now we’re in the South!

I live in Kentucky, so I have lots of Southern food on EaH.  But somehow, I had not done a post on fried green tomatoes.  I don’t make them very often, but they are oh-so-good.  I like to eat them on a sandwich with a slice of ripe tomato and mayonnaise.  Some people like them with ketchup on a sandwich or just on a plate.

Any way you eat them, they are full of summery, Southern goodness!

You have to use an iron skillet to make them right.  They’ll use a lot more oil than you think they will. Or use Crisco, if you really want to do it right.  (That makes me think of the Crisco scene in the book/movie The Help.)  They also take longer to make than you would think, because you’re working in batches.  Even though it doesn’t take too long for each batch to brown, the whole process takes a while.

It’s all worth it though!  Pour yourself a glass of sweet tea and sip while you cook.

Here’s what you’ll need:  [Read more...]

Ingredient Spotlight: Tomatoes 2012

We’ve had a lot of cherry tomatoes from our garden this summer.  There’s nothing like walking into the backyard and picking tomatoes for dinner.

Here are a few of my recipes that use tomatoes:  [Read more...]

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