Tuesday, August 30, 2022

A final word on Dr. Esselstyn's Black Bean Salsa

 Jose, who works at the Premium Halal Supermarket on the corner of Starling Avenue and Odell Street, has become my official taste tester for any Mexican-style dishes I try my hand at. Recently that was Cactus salad (approved), and lately I have been perfecting Dr. Esselstyn's Black Bean Salsa (From the book How to Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease). First time I gave it to him, I had forgotten the cilantro (pics), but yesterday I gave it to him with the cilantro, which was definitely better, but I am also fine tuning the number and blend of peppers that go into it. Recipe follows. 

By the way, while we're at it, there is an excellent site to research peppers, called Pepperscale.

I now like to use the following in my Black Bean Salsa:

Now for the updated recipe:

  • 2 cans of black beans, or 1 lb dry beans (cooked with some kombu in the pressure cooker or Instant Pot).
  • 1 can of corn
  • 3 stalks of celery, sliced paper thin
  • 2-3 Jalapeños, finely sliced
  • 2 Serranos, finely sliced
  • 1 Chilaca or Poblano pepper, sliced fine
  • 1 bunch of cilantro finely chopped
  • 1 bottle of Salsa Verde
  • 2-3 limes, juiced 

Clean all the ingredients, and slice the peppers fine, paper thin is the ideal. The celery also, paper thin is best (use the mandoline). I use all of the cilantro and again, just try to millimeter is. Now you'll understand why I love sharp knives. The finer you cut these things, the more the flavor spreads throughout. The secret to success here is the balance between aroma and heat.

As a practical matter, if you first pour the Salsa over the mixture, then you can wash out the bottle with the lime juice to get all of the salsa out. 

I prefer to let it marinate in the fridge for a day, and you can keep it for 4-5 days. You can serve it on tostadas, or rice cakes, or masa tortillas.