So this book has been in my collection and has been one of my favorites for many years. I see that it was recently republished in hardback and I can see why: it has stood the test of time. Another wonderful book from one of the best publishing imprints out there: Ten Speed Press.I think I may need to buy the hardback version–after 15 years of continuous use, my paperback version is showing its age!
“Great” is no overstatement.
The book is divided into 10 main sections (granted some of the divisions could be considered arbitrary–but who cares? The salsas are awesome!):
Tomato and Tomatillo Salsas;
Nut, Seed and Herb Salsas;
Ocean Salsas; and
I find it a bit odd that there is an “Exotic Salsa” category, as many of the salsa recipes in other categories I find exotic as well. But I highly recommend the “Ocean Salsa” chapter if you enjoy seafood. The “Sante Fe Shrimp Salsa” is a real winner. So is the “Smoky Barbecue Salsa” in the “Exotic Salsa” category.
But while it’s difficult to pick favorites, I have one that probably a hundred people have greatly enjoyed (and yes, I used to pretend it was my own recipe): the “Creole Salsa.” Believe it or not, it uses eggplant and packs a punch. I would never have thought to use eggplant, but you have got to try it. Whenever I make appetizers for a party, it is the first thing to go. It is rich and warm and really like nothing you have ever tried.
The opening chapters of Tomato and Tomatillo Salsas and Chile Salsas bring people though the more usual salsa styles with which most are familiar, but the recipes are well-worked out and at least to my tastes need little to no tinkering.
But I would also highly recommend the Corn Salsa and Bean Salsa chapter where there is really no recipe that you won’t marvel at when the salsa hits your lips.
Beautiful page-by-page pictures by Valerie Santagto. The Great Salsa Book was written by Mark Miller with Mark Kiffin and John Harrison also credited. Mark Miller once worked at Chez Panisse before opening his own restaurants in California.