The season of squash, pears, and potatoes is right around the corner, but we’re holding on to our precious tomatoes for dear life. Cooked into a tomato sauce, sliced up in an omelet, baked into a tart, and even eaten whole like an apple, we can’t get enough of this summertime delicacy. This week, we’re following the lead of Tim Cushman, chef and owner of N.Y.C. restaurants Covina and O Ya, and whipping up his Wood-Grilled, Fresh Tomato Salsa. “It’s great on everything—grilled fish, burgers, hot dogs, steak, pork, chicken, and of course served with guacamole and chips,” says Cushman. “There’s so much flavor and it’s so easy to make.” Read on below for the recipe.
Wood-Grilled, Fresh Garden Tomato Salsa
1 lb fresh, from the garden tomatoes
2 oz jalapeños
1 1/2 tsp sea or kosher salt
1 tsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp granulated sugar
Olive oil to coat
Optional: cilantro to taste lime juice to taste, chopped grilled onion to taste, 10 g roasted garlic
1. Light grill to hot. Be sure to brush the grates well and rub olive oil on to the grates with a thick pile of paper towels to avoid the food sticking to it.
2. Wash and dry tomatoes and jalapeños, and lightly rub them with olive oil.
3. Place the tomatoes and jalapeños on the grill. Char them on all sides well. The tomatoes may stick a little bit, but do your best to keep them in one piece and cook until the juices start to bubble under the skin. Don't worry if the skin splits, but do your best to keep them in tact. Cook the jalapeños until they’re charred and start to soften.
4. Remove from the grill. Cut stems off jalapeños and the core out of the tomatoes and discard both.
5. While still warm, either chop them by hand or run them through a food processor separately until a coarse chop consistency is achieved. Retain all tomato juice for the salsa; you may also want to add a little water if the tomatoes aren’t juicy enough.
6. Place chopped tomatoes, jalapeños, and all remaining ingredients in a bowl and mix. Adjust salt, vinegar, and sugar to your taste.
7. Best enjoyed warm or room temp.