Are you a fan of Mexican or Tex-Mex food? Do you like tacos, burritos, and quesadillas? What about the sauces and salsas that you put over them? Fresh and zesty salsas and sauces are an integral part of any traditional Mexican meal. In fact, whenever you’re at a traditional Mexican restaurant, notice that you’ll see a variety of its kind.
We add these sauces and salsas over a lot of dishes because they bring out the life in each of them. They are usually served cold or at room temperature and often spicy. Popular sauces and salsas usually involve a combination of tomatoes, onions, peppers, avocados, mangoes, and cucumbers, often mixed with olive oil, yogurt, or cream. These days we now have sauces and salsas which are sold in jars, conveniently available in supermarkets for us to enjoy daily. We can buy them, but we can also try making our own, for a fresher alternative. Wanna know how?
A little trivia first. Did you know that Salsa is actually the word for “sauce” in Spanish? The history of Salsa sauce originated with the Inca people. However, it was the Spaniards who first encountered tomatoes after their conquest of Mexico in 1519-1521, which marked the beginning of the history of Salsa sauce.
A few popular Mexican sauces and salsas include the Guacamole which is made of ripe avocado, tomato, chopped onions, and lime; the Salsa roja with ingredients that include cooked tomatoes, chiles, onion, garlic, and fresh cilantro; and the Salsa verde which has cooked tomatillos and chiles as part of its recipe. Other popular alternatives include the Pico de gallo which has raw tomatoes, lime juice, chiles, onions, cilantro leaves; Salsa negra, made up of dried chiles, oil, and garlic; as well as the Salsa taquera which has tomatillos and chipotle chile ingredients.
It’s easy to make your own! Now here are just a few tips in making authentic Mexican sauces and salsas:
- Always include chile, tomatoes, and something that has acid like lime juice or a zest of lemon.
- Firm produce and strongly flavored ingredients should be very finely chopped to evenly distribute the taste.
- If you decide to add more chile, use different varieties.
- Add in something sweet such as mango cubes and pineapple chunks
- Lastly, don’t forge to have fun and experiment on different ingredients!
Do share with us you’re newly discovered recipes. Or tell us how your homemade Mexican sauces and salsas go.