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Some people just give off cozy vibes. You know their house will be comfortable and unpretentious, warm and clean. They probably are great at small talk, make perfect coffee and cocktails, and of course, know how to cook. Nigella Lawson definitely fits the bill. She’s basically the British Ina Garten with a little bit of sensual glam thrown into the mix, and is known for her televised cooking shows and the many cookbooks she’s authored. We’ve long been fans of Lawson and her cooking, so when we saw that she’d shared a recipe for a fiery roasted vegetable salsa, we knew we had to put it on our must-try list.
If you aren’t a fan of pico de gallo or other raw, chunky salsas (especially in the winter when fresh and flavorful tomatoes are so hard to find), then Lawson’s roasted salsa is for you. Roasting the vegetables called for in the recipe – tomatoes, red onion, red bell peppers, red chiles, and garlic – deepens their flavor. The tomatoes and peppers get sweeter, and when the veggies are later blendeed together, the charred edges add a layer of smoky complexity to your salsa.
Lawson calls for using “red chiles” in the recipe. If you want a super-spicy salsa, you could use Thai bird chiles, or red jalapeños with the seeds and membranes left in. For a medium spice, use Fresno chiles, cherry peppers, or red jalapeños with the seeds and membranes removed. Or, if you prefer a very mild salsa, you can just use another red bell pepper.
When the veggies are roasted and charred in places, you blend them together. You can use a stick blender, and Lawson recommends pulsing the ingredients together rather than continuously running the blender, so you have more control over the finished texture.
Once your roasted red salsa is done, you can use it in tons of different ways. It’s obviously a tasty addition to any Mexican food you want to cook up, from tacos to tamales to enchiladas. But it can also be used to simply dress up roasted chicken or pork, and there’s no better way to appreciate freshly made salsa than by serving it straight up with a bowl of warm tortilla chips spritzed with lime juice. Say goodbye to the jarred salsa you usually keep on hand, because once you try Nigella Lawson’s salsa recipe, there’s no turning back.
Before you go, check out Garten’s best dinner recipes below:
Watch: We Tried Ina Garten’s Overnight Mac & Cheese & We Totally Get Why It Broke the Internet