Fire-Roasted Cherry Tomato Salsa - Rancho La Puerta
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Fire-Roasted Cherry Tomato Salsa

Makes 6 portions of 1/2 cup each

The best way to make this tasty salsa is in a molcajete, a traditional Mexican mortar and pestle made from volcanic rock, typically basalt. It has been used for centuries in Mexican cuisine to grind and crush various ingredients, particularly spices, herbs, and chilies, to create salsas, guacamole, and other sauces. A food processor on pulse will do the trick if you can keep everything from being whirled too fine. Chunky is part of the charm of this salsa! This superb salsa from our kitchen staff is excellent for grilled fish, poultry, tacos, or as a dip.


2 Medium White Onions

5 Cups Cherry Tomatoes

8 Garlic Cloves

6 Bell Peppers- divided.

4 Jalapeños- divided (adjust the number of jalapeños to control the heat you desire.)

Avocado Oil

Lemon Juice


Black Pepper



  1. Preheat oven to 375º
  2. Cut the onion into quarters and place on a baking sheet with the cherry tomatoes, garlic, 2 bell peppers, and 2 jalapenos. Lightly shower with oil. Bake for 15 minutes or until they start to turn golden. Set aside.
  3. Char the remaining bell peppers and jalapeños over direct flame until dark.
  4. In a molcajete, place all the roasted vegetables, a splash of oil, and smash until chunky. A food processor will work with pulses, leaving a chunky paste.
  5. Add the salt, pepper, and squeeze of lemon to taste.
  6. Discard the seeds from the fire-roasted bell peppers and jalapeños and finely chop and stir them into your salsa.
  7. Use as a bed for grilled fish, tacos, on salad, or a s a dip.
  8. Garnish with a dash of cilantro

¡Buen Provecho!

*Fire Roasting Peppers and Jalapeños.

1. Place Peppers on the Flame: Use tongs to hold the peppers by the stems, and carefully place them directly onto the flame. 

2. Rotate and Char: As the skin of the peppers starts to blister and char, use the tongs to gently rotate the peppers, ensuring that all sides come in contact with the flame. Depending on their size and the flame’s heat, this process should take 2-4 minutes per pepper.

3. Transfer to a Bowl: Once the peppers are evenly charred on all sides, carefully transfer them to a bowl. You can cover the bowl to let the peppers steam for a few minutes. 

4. Peel the Skin: Leave the charred skin on for an extra toasty flavor. Or, after a few minutes, use your fingers or a knife to peel off the charred skin from the peppers. It should come off relatively quickly. Don’t worry about removing every bit of char; a little residue is okay and adds flavor.

5. Remove Seeds and Stem: Cut or tear open the peppers and remove the seeds and stem. You can scrape off the inner membrane if you want milder heat.

Download the recipe.