Apr 13, 2010

First Taste of Salsa

We're big food people in our family.  We are total Food Network junkies, even the kids, and all of us like to cook, bake, grill, you name it.  Whenever I start cooking in the kitchen, the kids will stop playing and come to check it out.  Then they'll ask if they can help, and I always let them do something.

Occasionally, I will get out some cookbooks and hand them to the kids, asking them to pick a recipe they want to make.  They love doing this, especially because it means they can help cook.  So, the other day, Oldest picked up a Mexican cookbook and started flipping through it.  He stopped when he came to a picture of regular tomato salsa.
Oldest: What's this?
Me: That's salsa. You can eat that with tortilla chips.
Oldest: (grinning big) Really? Can we make some? (tortilla chips are his absolute favorite snack)
Me: (laughing) Sure. 

I chopped up some tomatoes, and then I got out the green onions (I prefer the way they taste to regular onions) and started slicing them into tiny circles.  The boys were watching the whole time, of course.  Then Oldest pointed to the white part of a green onion and ask a surprising question.
Oldest: Do you have to cook that first or can you eat it like that?
Me: Well, you can eat it that way, but it's got a really strong flavor.
Oldest: Is it spicy?
Me: Yeah, kinda.  But really it's just a very strong flavor.  You may not like it.
Oldest: Can I try it anyway?
Me: Sure, if you want.  But just a small piece.

I pulled the tiny rings apart and gave him the smallest one.  He put it in his mouth and bit down once.  Then his eyes got as round a saucers and he sprinted to the fridge.  He pulled out his glass of milk and sucked the whole thing down, then he turned back to me, panting.
Oldest: Wow, that was too strong!
Me: (trying not to laugh) Yes, it's very strong.  But I think it's great you tried it.

For the record, he still tried the salsa and liked it, though he didn't like the cilantro I added to it.  So he asked me to leave that out next time.  :)


Matthew Rush said...

Anytime kids try new things (that their parents approve first) it's awesome. My 14 YO daughter has recently decided to go vegetarian except she actually still eats fish and now all of a sudden loves sushi.

In fact her favorite is toro nigiri. That's the one with the small clump of rice with the big fat red piece of raw tuna on top. Intimidating at first but delicious once you've had it.

Anyway kudos to you for getting your kids to be adventurous with food! Thanks for sharing Tabitha.


MissV said...

I got two things to say...

First, can I have your salsa recipe? I'm planting a garden this year JUST so we can make our own salsa.

Second, you totally took me back to when I was a little girl eating green onions right out of the garden. MMMMMMM. Grossed everyone else out, but they were yummy!

Tabitha said...

Matthew - my oldest son will also eat sushi. He likes salmon best. The kicker is that he won't eat fish sticks. Go figure. :)

MissV - My salsa recipe isn't really a recipe...I just kind of throw it all together and wing it. But I'll share. :)

2 large tomatoes, diced (or, for a sweeter flavor, use a few big handfuls of grape tomatoes)
6 green onions, sliced (greens and all)
2 to 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 to 2 jalapenos, diced (remove seeds to reduce the spicey heat, or leave them in if you like the heat)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
Mix all this in a bowl and you're good to go. :)

I used to eat green onions out of the garden, too. My family could never figure this out because I hated regular onions. But I would watch my grandfather eating green onions this way and I guess I wanted to do it too. :) They are very yummy!!

Tabitha said...

Oh yeah, I forgot an ingredient. I chop up a few sprigs of fresh cilantro and mix that in, too.

MissV said...

AWESOME!!! Thank you!