My cousin gave us a massive amount of cilantro last week and I’ve been trying to use it all before it goes wonky. And the other night (perhaps propelled by wine inspired joie de vivre) Jedd and I decided to use the cilantro, almonds* and several Thai chilies to make a very spicy salsa.
Now, I was going for hot salsa – not Loony Tunes eyeball exploding salsa – which is what we ended up with. When we did the math we realized that there was the equivalent of 25 jalapenos in the 3 cups of salsa. (Really. It’s science.) But, we were just a little ebullient when we threw the Thai peppers into the blender.
So, if you want to be passive aggressive with someone whose pride is linked to how much hot food they can consume, make this recipe as written. But if you just want an incredibly delicious salsa (and even through the heat, this is really light and flavorful) then cut back on the amount of hot peppers and enjoy.
*Note: This is an older recipe that we had a reader request for. (We’re glad you like it!) But back when I wrote this, it was before the California water shortage. Almonds are much more expensive in 2016, then they were in 2012. So, if you’re feeling frugal, pistachios would make a great (and beautiful) substitute.
Triple Dog Dare Almond and Thai Pepper Salsa
¼ cup olive oil
4 tablespoons of lime juice
¾ cup of lightly toasted almonds
1 large bunch of cilantro (approximately 2 cups, including all but the roughest of the stems)
5 Thai chilies
1 small red onion, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons of white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Cut the tops off of the chilies and combine all of the ingredients in a blender. (You really want to use rubber gloves when handling the chili peppers. Trust me on this.)
Blend until everything is incorporated and at the desired consistency.
(Photo by Launie Kettler)