Food & Drink

Fiery and flavorful salsas

The kaleidoscope of tomatoes and peppers now in season offers an almost unlimited color palette for making salsa.

And on the flavor side, the huge range of heirloom and standard tomatoes lets you go from expected to subtle to sweeter, with all kinds of tart or acidic or fruity notes to be found. Peppers range from all fruit and no heat in simple bell peppers to the incendiary habanero, which enflames a salsa called Dog's Nose -- so named, some say, because yours will be wet, too, after a tiny bite.

The three recipes provided here illustrate a variety of styles of uncooked salsas: simple Pico de Gallo; sweet fruitiness in Spicy Peach Salsa; and a daring level of fire in the Dog's Nose Salsa, which is also known by the Mayan words for dog's nose, Xni Pec.

Use the recipes as is, or do a little experimenting by swapping out tomatoes, peppers or other ingredients to achieve different looks or flavors. And if you're feeling really creative, use our brief list of suggestions for making your own salsa from the ground up.

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