a sweet and simple and mostly mild salsa
I used begrudge our little Ohio town for Not Being Raleigh and for Not Having An Umstead Park To Run At. I sneered at the quaint Stars-Hollow beat of life. (But in all seriousness…..I pretty much live in Stars Hollow). At night I’d whisper beneath the covers, glaring into my Kindle — this place is dumb, it’s not real.
But after a year, I’m falling in love. There are several contributing factors:
- Insert very long story … and then Jason realized I was clinically depressed and took me to my doctor.
- Getting back into a regular running routine.
- Summertime. I love being hot and sweaty and the sun staying out late and everything else that goes along with it.
- Being DONE with school
- Our awesome little farmer’s market.
Okay. So really only one of those factors actually has anything to do with the town. I did love the Raleigh farmer’s market, but this one is close enough to walk to. And as I no longer work on Saturdays, I can go on a regular basis.
There’s no single stall I like the best. Jason says I throw elbows at the peach stand, but a) that’s not true and b) you gotta try these peaches. There are stands that I skip and stands that I must hit every time. One of the ones that I hit every time is the kale lady. I never actually buy her kale, but I do load up on her padrón peppers and puslane.
Padrón peppers are also known as roulette peppers because they are mostly mild, with the occasional scorcher. They are fun to pop as a snack, all toasty and oily and blistered from the pan.
But they also make excellent salsa. Normally I am not a fan of mild salsas, but in the summertime, I just want to taste every flavor, and not just the heat. Plump blackberries, sweet milky corn, the ephemeral wonder of the summer tomato. I want to know that they are all there on my tongue. The padrón is perfect for this, a hovering of warmth with an occasional flare.
I kept the corn in the salsa raw, but it bothers your stomach, feel free to roast it first. In this case, use two ears of corn instead of one, as some of the plumpness will be lost in cooking.
Although some salsas taste better as they mellow over time, this recipe tastes best fresh. Eat it the same day you make it. If you must keep it for a second day, add a spoon or two of brown sugar to bring back the sweetness in the blackberries.
- 6 oz padron peppers
- 8 oz blackberries
- 8 oz cherry tomatoes
- 1 avocado
- 1 large ear of corn
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/4 tsp microplane-grated garlic
- salt to taste
- coconut oil
- Coat a large pan with a thin layer of coconut oil, and set over medium heat.
- Once hot, place the peppers in the pan. Cook until dark blisters appear on the bottom of the peppers, about 3-4 minutes. Turn and cook on the other side for 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and salt immediately.
- Mince the peppers
- Dice the avocado and tomatoes, and strip the kernels off the corn.
- Gently cut the blackberries in half.
- Toss the peppers, the corn, the tomatoes, the avocaodes, and the blackberries together in a bowl.
- Add the lemon juice and garlic.
- Add salt to taste and serve right away.