What better way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo than with some good food and friends. I recently had a Mexican fiesta with some friends who love Mexican food. It’s one of my favourites too. For snacks I made tomato salsa, ancho chile lime pepitas, and jicama with lime and chili salt. The jicama with lime and chili salt was a new one for me and I’ll be eating lots of it this summer. The crisp juiciness of the jicama is perfectly refreshing with lime and salt balancing out the flavours. It’s a little nuts how tasty this combination is. If you want to make authentic Mexican salsa you should get a recipe from someone from Mexico. Luckily I badgered a friend for her recipe which appears below, word for word. Thanks Yoli, I always think of you when I make it! It’s my go-to salsa recipe and a fresh taste of Mexico. -bvox
Jicama with Chili-Salt
1 tablespoon flaky sea salt (I like Maldon)
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 jicama (1 to 2 lb)
Mix salt with chili powder to taste. Place in a small bowl. Peel jicama, rinse and cut into 1/2-inch-thick sticks. Cut limes into wedges. Arrange jicama, limes, and chili salt on a platter. To eat, squirt lime on jicama, sprinkle chili salt on top.
Roasted Ancho Chile Lime Pepitas
1 cup raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
Juice of ½ lime
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon ancho chile powder
1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
Pinch salt (I used smoked salt)
Preheat the oven to 325 F. Toss all ingredients together, so that the pepitas are coated with lime, olive oil, salt, chili flakes and chile powder. Spread pepitas onto a baking sheet. Place in the oven and roast, stirring occasionally for about 10-15 minutes, or until the pepitas are nicely browned and puffed up. Use immediately or store in an airtight container. Great on salads.
Salsa for the Weekend
5 roma tomatoes (never use the other type…never!) Bvox disclosure: The romas didn’t look great – these were local!
1/3 white onion (never use the Canadian dry onion, it’s too strong)
2 fresh chilis (more if you want it very spicy)
Optional: Garlic (just a tiny bit)
Boil the tomatoes in water for 15 minutes, until they are very soft (the more the better). Take the water out (strain) and throw them in the blender (Mexicans can’t survive without a blender). You can also grill the tomatoes on the BBQ. I would normally grill them, but the weather (Calgary) makes it difficult sometimes. Add the onions, chilies, cilantro and salt. Blend it all together and there’s your salsa! Enjoy!