Fresh Garden Salsa - The Best Reward After Months of Work

We came home this week from vacation with Ben's family, visiting his sister, Katie, in Seattle. When we got home, our garden had taken off! We have an abundance of tomatoes growing on the eight plants - which now look more like bushes - that we have planted.

I'm trying to come up with an idea for how we will use all of the tomatoes we will be harvesting this summer! I've seen recipes for tomato pie, balsamic glazed tomatoes, and all other delicious sounding tomato recipes. I'm hoping to hear recommendations from friends and family about what they like to do with tomatoes in the summer.

The first thing I did with the small batch that we gathered this week was to make salsa. Fresh, homemade salsa is one of my favorite things, but I realized that I had never actually made it myself before! (Ben has made it several times at his parents' house.) So I figured that Simply in Season, my go-to cookbook for fresh veggies, would be a good place to start. I used the Summer Salsa recipe on pg. 163, and although it got mixed reviews from Ben (too much basil, which he accurately identified made it taste more like bruschetta), but at a book swap party I had with girlfriends, they all loved it!

It's really basic and easy for a beginner (like me) who doesn't have a good attention span when it comes to following recipes!

Fresh Summer Salsa:

8 medium tomatoes, diced
1 medium red onion, diced
1 large green pepper, diced
2-3 hot chili peppers (for a more mild and sweet salsa, I used banana peppers from our garden)
1/4 bunch fresh cilantro (I omitted this since we don't like it in our house!)
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
salt to taste

Combine in medium sized bowl. Let stand (or refrigerate) for 30 minutes and serve. Enjoy!

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