For the past several days the weather has been wonderful. Unseasonably warm, dry, and perfect for those outside chores which I had been delaying.
We have been eating dinner outside as well, enjoying the chorus of insect sounds and the soft breezes that still don’t contain even a bit of the chill of autumn. Since it is getting dark earlier, and with working outside I am preparing dinner later, we also are able to enjoy the patio in torch-light. This really is a perfect time of year!
I still have tomatoes in the garden, and zucchini as well. Tonight’s dinner was quick, grilled vegetable fajitas. I grilled zucchini, red pepper, onion, and mushrooms until slightly softened, then cut them into chunks. I mixed these with corn which had stripped from the cob and froze a few weeks ago, and also some pieces of poblano chili pepper which I had roasted over charcoal, peeled, and froze earlier this summer. I chopped avocado, made salsa, and served this all with whole wheat tortillas. The vegetables were very good, but the charcoal-roasted poblanos peppers added a smoky taste which was fantastic.
The salsa recipe which I used is from Rick Bayless’ Authentic Mexican (can it be—this book is 20 years old???).
1 very ripe, large tomato
Fresh hot green chilies to taste
1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped
8-10 sprigs fresh cilantro, chopped
salt, about ½ teaspoon
1 teaspoon cider vinegar or (best) freshly-squeezed lime juice
Finely chop the tomato and scoop into a small bowl. If you want a milder salsa, seed the chilis then chop the peppers very finely and add to the tomato. Add all remaining ingredients and allow the flavors to mingle at room temperature for at least a half hour.
I like this recipe because it allows you to be creative with the quantities. I usually use more garlic, and always use lime juice (I tried the cider vinegar once and didn’t care for it). This time I used just one very hot pepper which a friend had given me from his garden and the after-effect was enough to burn your lips but not so much that your mouth felt seared. :)