Ah, January. The Longest, Coldest Month. Right After the Holidays. So Difficult to Motivate. But like Maria said, “Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start.” So let’s begin, right here. (P.S. Welcome back! I’m coming in loud and clear.)
The Christmas season is now officially over (I’ve marked this as coinciding with the end of the holiday train show at the New York Botanical Gardens) and I feel like writing again.
I also feel like cooking again, having endured (while at the same time loving every minute of it) the usual temptations, food-wise, of the season.
Now, however. Now is not the time for resolutions which will never be kept, those that mean to make me feel deprived and embroiled in a relentless struggle to be “good.” No, now is a time to return to my beloved weekly routine of making food for myself, which I actually adore, in which I want to pay attention to what I’m eating because, well, I like food that tastes good.
The star of my meal tonight was undoubtedly the salsa verde, so that’s what I want to talk about this evening.
Now let me explain about salsa and me. Before I met Jorge, my wonderful sweetheart and unwitting sensei into the realm of Mexican cuisine, I had a bit of a thing for salsa, albeit the kind from a jar, usually served with tortilla chips from a bag. I’m not even sure, though, if I’d ever tried a real, homemade salsa verde until about 2 years ago.
When I realized I could make salsa verde myself, it was a moment exactly as I had had in France when I was 22, staying with a host family, and tried my host mother’s homemade vinaigrette salad dressing. The lightbulb went on: “I can make my own dressing? No way.” I’d grown up eating bottled Zesty Italian dressing thinking that was as good as it ever got.
Salsa verde is about the easiest thing to make at home, aside from a good homemade French vinaigrette.
And the versatility! It’s equally at home alongside some breakfast eggs, some weeknight rice and beans, or zesting up a chicken breast or roasted vegetables, on a baked sweet potato, etc. And of course: CHILAQUILES.
But first, salsa.