Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Llajua pronounced "YAH-kwa"

This recipe is NOT for the meek.  If you find Senor Pepe's Mild Salsa a bit too fiery than DO NOT MAKE THIS RECIPE!!!    You have been warned.

We were recently at a birthday party for another child in our son's daycare.  The family is Bolivian and both grandmothers were visiting.  They were getting the food out and put this pleasantly green "salsa" in front of us.   My husband innocently asked, "What's this?"  Apparently it is common recipe in Bolivia and is used as a salsa-like dip or a sauce on various dishes.  We also found out that just like most traditional recipes, no one makes it exactly the same.  One grandmother said just to throw everything into the food processor, seeds and all.  "If too hot, just add a little tomato."  The other grandmother swore the entire recipe would be ruined if you added tomato!  

It took a while and much deliberation on the grandmother's part but we got the gist of the recipe.  Enough so that we could play around with proportions until we got something we really liked.  I don't have a picture yet but will post one soon!  

Min!  Perhaps I'll bring this to the BBQ in July!

Here's what you need...

8-10  Jalapenos (seeded)
1 medium red onion
coarse salt (maybe a 1/2 tsp or so)
fresh cilantro (about a palm's worth)

Roll the jalapenos on the table before you cut them open.  Apparently this helps get the seeds out.  After seeding the jalapenos, cut both onions and peppers into uniform size pieces and put everything into a food processor.  Cutting it uniformly will help everything get processed more evenly.  Pulse the processor until you have a very finely chopped consistency.  You may have to adjust and add more salt and/or cilantro to taste.  

We played with this recipe a couple times...  we preferred red onion to white onion and leaving the seeds OUT.  The llajua we tried at the party had one habanero pepper in it which added pretty reddish flecks of color but I couldn't feel my lips after 3 bites.  Feel free to take out a jalapeno or two and add the habanero if you're brave!

Great with a Corona!!

1 comment:

Min said...

Spicy! Sounds great. Corona is a prerequisite to this salsa, I believe. Yes, bring some! (we'll bring the Corona!)

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