Whip out the food processor and fire up the grill because you’ll need these essential tools to clone one of the best restaurant salsas in the business. The key to recreating the flavor of the real deal is to fire roast the tomatoes and the jalapenos, and to add a little mesquite-flavored liquid smoke.
The restaurant chain uses a mesquite grill, so these steps are crucial to getting the same smoky flavor as the addictive restaurant version. Chevys uses chipotle peppers, or smoked red jalapeno peppers. But unless you grow your own jalapenos, it may be difficult to find the riper red variety in your local supermarket. For this recipe, the green jalapeno peppers will work fine.
- 6 medium tomatoes
- 10 jalapenos (red is best)
- 1/4 of a medium Spanish onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 tablespoons white vinegar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons mesquite-flavored liquid smoke
1. Preheat your barbecue grill to high temperature.
2. Remove any stems from the tomatoes, then rub some oil over each tomato. You can leave the stems on the jalapenos.
3. Place the tomatoes on the grill when it’s hot. After about 10 minutes, place all of the jalapenos onto the grill. In about 10 minutes you can turn the tomatoes and the peppers. When almost the entire surface of the peppers has charred black you can remove them from the grill. The tomatoes will turn partially black, but when the skin begins to come off they are done. Put the peppers and tomatoes on a plate and let them cool.
4. When the tomatoes and peppers have cooled, remove most of the skin from the tomatoes and place them into a food processor. Pinch the stem end from each of the peppers and place them into the food processor as well. Toss out the liquid that remains on the plate.
5. Add the remaining ingredients to the food processor and puree on high speed for 5-10 seconds or until the mixture has a smooth consistency.
6. Place the salsa into a covered container and chill for several hours or overnight while the flavors develop.
Makes approximately 2 cups.