For those folks living in Canada that do not get out much or are too busy swatting mosquitos and black flies all summer or shoveling snow all winter to never have had the experiece of knowing what Rotel is…. Let me enlighten you.
Rotel is a marvelous product made by ConAgra Foods in the U.S.
Here is what it looks like in a can.
This stuff is amazing. Many, many Americans use it in just about everything they cook…except maybe pancakes or a souffle, as I am sure that wouldn’t go over very well with your family.
Many egg dishes, and any South-West/Mexican style of dish or sauce gets a healthy dose of this stuff. Awesome in Chili or even used right out of the can as a salsa, it truly is one of the greatest inventions EVER! *Almost* better than chocolate…ALMOST.
BUT…it is NOT sold in Canada. I have been lobbying the company for several years, even threatening to cut off their chile pepper supply if they don’t bring it across the border. I even threw a temper tantrum. But apparently all my efforts had been in vain.
So what to do?
Make my own of course, and I was darn determined to do just that….somehow….
So last year when I decided I wanted to grow different varieties of Chile Peppers in my garden, I first headed to my local Chapters Bookstore (like Barnes & Noble for you U.S. readers) and picked up an amazing how-to-know-it-all book on growing peppers.
The absolute ultimate guide in growing peppers.
I have not regretted buying this book since I picked it up. Anyone that is attempting to grow their own peppers, you need to pick up this book. You will not begrudge the money spent.
After I started my peppers and had them growing in the garden, I had a chance to sit and read through the rest of the book. Well, let me tell you, I was SO excited at what I found at the back of the book – do you know what was there???
Lots and lots of them in fact. This book is beyond know-how and how-to, it is also HOW TO MAKE YUMMY, SUPER SPICY FOOD.
I was in heaven.
Amongst these glossy pages of peppery goodness, I found the holy grail of recipes. How to make your own Green Chiles with Tomatoes….aka Rotel….why oh why did I not discover this book sooner? I did modify the recipe to use fresh peppers as their recipe called for roasted New Mexico chiles, and lots of them but because of the significant increase in heat on the Scoville scale, I reduced the amount of fresh jalapenos or serranos so as not to blast my taste buds off the planet.
But I think I have made you read enough, so let’s get on with it shall we?
Green Chiles with Tomatoes
3 Cups peeled and chopped Roma Tomatoes
1 Cup diced fresh Jalapeño or Serrano peppers (depending how hot you like them, remove seeds/inner ribs for less heat)
1/2 Cup chopped, fresh Cilantro
1 to 2 tsp Ground Cumin (to your preference)
1 1/2 tsp Salt
1 1/4 Cups White Vinegar *
Wash and sterilize canning jars and lids so they are ready (I keep jars on a sheet pan in the oven held at 225F).
Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan, bring to a boil over medium-high heat, cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.
Ladle into hot, sterilized canning jars, taking care to use all the liquid and leaving a 1/2″ headspace.
Process in a boiling water canning bath for 30 minutes (start timing when water returns to a boil).
Remove from canner and let cool on wire racks. Label and store in a cool area.
Makes about 5 x 250ml jars.
* Half of the vinegar can be replaced with Lime Juice or Lemon Juice for a different flavour.
There you have it, your very own Rotel, made by you to be enjoyed by all.
I now thumb my nose at ConAgra Foods ~ Ha!