This is a home canning recipe for Salsa Roja, meaning “red sauce”.
It has a very deep, browny red colour and a slightly smoky aroma and flavour.
This is the kind of sauce you use as an ingredient in a dish, such as baked enchiladas, etc. It’s not a dipping salsa. (Salsa just means ‘sauce’, and there are different kinds of ‘sauce.’)
This recipe uses ancho chile peppers. These are not hot peppers; they are very mild peppers used to provide an under-layer of complex taste in Mexican dishes.
See also: Roasted Tomato Guajillo Salsa.
Jar size choices: Quarter-litre (½ US pint / 250 ml / 8 oz)
Processing method: Water bath or steam canning
Yield: 3 x quarter-litre (½ US pint) jar
Headspace: 2 cm (½ inch)
Processing time: 25 minutes
- Start oven heating to 220 C (425 F / Gas mark 7.)
- Wash tomatoes, core, cut in half and place cut side up on large rimmed ungreased baking sheet.
- Leave onion peeled, cut in fours, add to baking sheet skin sides down.
- Peel garlic cloves, seal in a small piece of tin foil, add to baking sheet.
- Bake until tomatoes and onion start to get soft, and brown a bit. Remove baking sheet from oven and let cool.
- Heat an ungreased frying pan (e.g. cast iron or a griddle) until very hot.
- Rinse dried chiles and pat dry.
- Put the dried chiles in the pan, and let each side toast for about 10 seconds, or until they just start to puff. (Don't allow to scorch.)
- Put them in a bowl and cover with the boiling water to soften -- about 15 to 20 minutes.
- Remove peels on roasted veg and add put them all into a food processor bowl.
- When the chiles are soft, drain but reserve water. Remove the stems, rip them open and swish them in the water to rinse off the seeds. Add the chiles (not the water) to the food processor bowl .
- Add lime juice to the food processor bowl.
- Whiz the mixture in the food processor until smooth.
- If desired, Ball says you may add a bit of the chile soaking water to thin the mixture a bit. Discard the rest of the water.
- If desired, adjust taste with salt and pepper.
- Put salsa in a pan and reheat on stove OR put in microwave-safe jug or bowl and zap until piping hot.
- Ladle sauce into heated jars, leaving 2 cm (½ inch) headspace.
- Debubble, adjust headspace.
- Wipe jar rims.
- Put lids on.
- Process in a water bath or steam canner.
- Process jars for 25 minutes; increase time as needed for your altitude.
How to water bath process.
How to steam can.
When water-bath canning or steam canning, you must adjust the processing time for your altitude.
- You will want about 100 g (3.5 oz) of ancho peppers. On average, an ancho weighs 17 g (.6 oz)
- Instead of the whole tomatoes, you could use 350 ml (12 oz 1 ½ cups) of crushed tomatoes. Roast just the onion and garlic; add the crushed tomato to the food processor bowl at step 10 above.
- Salt used (optional) doesn’t need to be pickling salt because we are not worried about clouding here. Instead of salt, you may use a non-bitter salt sub.
- There is no provision for canning larger-sized jars. But these size jars are usually the perfect recipe size anyway.
- You’ll want about 2 key limes. Tip! To get a better juice yield, zap in microwave before cutting for 20 to 30 seconds depending on strength of your microwave. Mind squirting hot juice when slicing into the lime afterward.
- Yes, it’s correct that Ball calls for fresh lime juice here. If you prefer to use bottled, or that is all you have on hand, that is fine, too.
- Ball says the reason for toasting the chiles is to wake up the flavour.
- ‘Salsa’ means ‘sauce’ and ‘roja’ means ‘red.’
- Butcher, Meredith L., Ed. The All New Ball Book of Canning and Preserving. New York: Oxmoor House. 2016. Page 166.
Per 250 ml (1 cup / 8 oz)
- 146 calories, 30 mg sodium
* Nutrition info provided by https://caloriecount.about.com
* PointsPlus™ calculated by healthycanning.com. Not endorsed by Weight Watchers® International, Inc, which is the owner of the PointsPlus® registered trademark.