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Salsa and Chimichurri: Healthy Versatile Sauces to Compliment Nearly Every Meal.

By: Elizabeth Smith

Here in California, as the days grow longer and the temps heat up, I find myself wanting to cook less and eat lighter. This is especially true right now. With tensions high and infrequent trips to the grocer; simple, fresh, healthy meals are our daily goal. I like to make one to two sauces a week that I can use to add more flavor to any meal that I may make. You can use these on even the simplest ingredients and create healthy delicious meals

Two basic sauces that I make nearly every week, no matter what is on the menu, are some sort of salsa and something along the lines of a chimichurri. They are both super flexible recipes that can suit a ton of different ingredients and handle some serious modifications. Honestly, nearly every savory thing I can think of...everything from eggs, grilled veggies, charred cauliflower, sandwiches, poached fish, to skirt steaks; these sauces are a great way to make every meal a little more gourmet.

Fresh Salsa Recipe

Salsa is super easy to make, easy to modify, and pretty much goes with everything. In the summer one of my favorite modifications for salsa is to add a handful of super small diced watermelon and pinch of fresh chopped mint to the recipe. Another great modification for this time of year is to dice up some fresh strawberries, chiffonade a little basil, and stir it in.

So fresh, so delicious, amazing on avocado toast, not to mention shrimp tacos. My super basic salsa recipe is below, but really try anything to mix it up. Add diced cucumber, radishes, pineapple, mango, jicama, anything you enjoy raw. If you want it less spicy, try substituting 1/2 a poblano. Just remember, to adjust the lime juice and salt until the flavor suits you.

2 to 3 medium sized fresh tomatoes stems removed and small diced

1/2 red onion peeled and small diced

2 serrano chiles or 1 small to medium jalapeño chile, ribs and seeds removed and small diced

1 lime juiced

1/2 cup cilantro finely chopped

1/2 tsp. cumin

Salt to taste

  1. Finely dice the tomatoes, onion, and chile. Be mindful when working with chiles. You can use a plastic bag or disposable gloves to handle them. Also, try to avoid touching the ribs and seeds the pepper.

  2. Place all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and fold together.

  3. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Like I said, super easy. Also, you can make this in a food processor if you have one. Just give everything a rough chop, toss it in and and pulse 5-10 times, being mindful to not puree the ingredients.

Viola, now make it yours!