Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Salsa Dip - A Healthy Snack

My office had a pot luck lunch yesterday and we all made different dishes to bring in. I made what I like to call Nacho El Grande (a pile of Nacho chips covered in Salsa sauce, chicken and cheese and baked till the cheese melts). Everyone in the office loved it. OK not the healthiest thing in the world to be eating, but every once in while, its OK.

What I want to share with everyone is my recipe for Salsa – main reason being that is actually an extremely healthy dip for chips. Its almost all vegetables… hence its even good for you. Surprising no one promotes this as a health food item. The Nacho chips itself may be high in calorie but you can switch it to healthy alternatives like Papadam which also goes great with the Salsa. You can microwave the papadam (about 30 to 40 seconds on high) till it becomes crispy. It will be very dry, but it will be healthier than deep frying it. Another healthy option is to use tortilla bread and just toast them in your convection owen till it becomes hard. Then just break it up and you have tortilla chips. The Nacho chips you buy in the packet has 500 calories per 100g and 29 g of fat per 100g as well… so not the best of options if you want to go healthy. Safer to go with the suggestions above.

If you are going to use a dip, this is the healthiest dip out there and it tastes great. You can also use this salsa for your cooking to add that Mexican zing to any dish. So the possibilities are endless.

So here’s how you make it.

Salsa Ingredients:
1. Red Onion
2. Capsicum (green)
3. Garlic
4. Tomato
5. Tomato Puree
6. Tomato Ketchup (little bit)
7. Jalapeno
8. Chilli powder / chili flakes
9. Salt
10. White Pepper
11. Lime

Finely chop up items 1, 2, 3, 4 and 7. For item 7, you only need the the Jalapeno slices. Use a fork to dig it out of the jar so you don’t take any vinegar. You don’t need the vinegar for this. The portions should be 1 portion Jalapeno and garlic, 2 portions of Onion & capsicum and 4 portions of tomatoes. Do note blend these items as it will taste different. I was lazy once and tried blending it and it tasted horrid.
Put all this chopped items in a bowl. Pour a little bit of ketchup and double the amount of tomato puree. So if you put in one table spoon of ketchup, add in 2 table spoons of tomato puree. Mix everything up till it’s evenly mixed. Add in some salt and pepper to taste as well as some chilli powder to give it a little bite.
Give it a quick taste. You should be able to taste the combination of all the chopped ingredients. If any of the ingredients taste overpowering, throw in little more chopped tomatoes to dull it. If you feel you would like a certain taste to be more prominent, throw in more of those ingredients.
Finally, squeeze in a bit of lime juice at the end for that tang which just makes it taste like salsa. I normally only use about half a lime or less, so don’t go overboard or all you will tastes is lime.

So there you have it. It’s really simple, tastes great and sure beats the heck of buying imported salsa which costs about RM 10 or more for one small bottle. Kimball or Maggi has salsa which is cheaper, but that is just sweet and does not taste like authentic salsa.

Give this recipe a try and see. If anyone has any other secret salsa recipes or other suggestions of what you can replace the chips with, please do share. As usual, look forward to hearing your comments.


The Corporate Athlete said...

this is a great recipe ... a healthy one too. I love this salsa dip, and normally add some Tabasco to it. If you opt for a much healthier nacho, they even have the organic ones now .... if not, the regular unsalted nachos are one of the healthiest 'chips' around.

Rajan said...

CA: Organic chips... thanks for sharing. Did a comparison between the tortilla bread and the normal nacho chips.... big difference and the healthier choice is Tortilla bread... almost half the calories and about 1/4 the fat content.

thanks for sharing

Kerp (Ph.D) said...

whoaa...looks good. but to be honest am not really a fan of mexican/mediterranean food.

the salsa sauce may compliment papedoms well but come to think of it, papedom actually goes well with anything, esp plain rice with curry rumbe2, fried chicken and muttons...hehehehe...

eh but i didnt know papedom is a healthy snack. its my fav bro.

thats it lah, i'm goin for banana leaf this weekend!

Rajan said...

Kerp: Hi Bro...pappadam is healthier than all the other chips out there bro.... but as usual... too much of any good thing can be bad.

banana leaf - its actually healthy... only killer is the rice part... try indian rice bro... has half the calories and starch of normal rice. Load up on the vege and stay away from the fried stuff.... and you will be doing good.

Lexis Excellence said...

I really miss American food... like being able to run down to Wal Mart and pick up some Salsa and chips.

I'm sure we got salsa-chips here, but its never going to taste the same. It'll always have some really weird crazy out of place durian curry thing going on and it just wont capture the magic of the brand-named American salsa and tortilla chips that I grew up with.

I miss Doritos, diet Rock Star drinks, tacos, Subway sandwiches (yes we have subway here but there's only like ONE in the entire KL area and its like 500 km away), those cheese-bread pizzas you pop in the microwave for 2 minutes...

If I had the money, I'd go back there and have lunch.

Eza Bella said...

i didnt know papedom is a healthy snack
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