Black Bean Salsa

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Whenever we have friends over, I hope to appeal to assorted tastes by offering  a variety of snacks.  If I'm serving dips for crackers, my "go-to" recipe is the Sun-dried Tomato Spread.  If I want tasty nuts sitting around, I'll make the classic Rosemary Nuts. If I need something more unusual, I love making Artichokes and serving them chilled. However, no matter what I'm serving, I almost always have something well-suited for tortilla chips.  That means Ceviche, Guacamole, Salsa or the recipe below for Black Beans/Corn/Tomato Salsa.  I need to find a better name for the dish, but when people are gobbling this up, no one quibbles about the title.

So here's what you need to have:

  • 2 cans black beans (16 oz)
  • 2 cans corn (shoepeg corn is preferable) or 3 cups frozen corn, thawed
  • 1 cup chopped bell pepper (green is fine, though yellow or orange provide nice contrast and flavor)
  • 1/2 bunch  cilantro, chopped
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 6-8 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon diced jalapeno (to taste)
  • 2-3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 3-4 limes
  • 1 tsp Tapatio (or to taste if you don't like much heat)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • lemon pepper
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Don't be put off by the long list of ingredients; this comes together super fast.  First up, rinse the corn and black beans and let them drain thoroughly.  As I mentioned in the list, the first choice for corn is "shoepeg" corn which may be hard to find if you don't live in the South.  The corn is a white sweet corn that is delicious and adds a great flavor to the dish.  That said,  I've made the salsa with regular corn and can't complain about the outcome!

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Next, chop up and add your cilantro, green pepper, garlic, and red onion. NOTE: if you want to take the bite out of the fresh onion, dice the onion and soak it in ice water for 15 minutes.

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Mix together these ingredients first, then add your chopped tomatoes.  Drizzle with olive oil (use the good stuff, because you definitely taste the quality of the oil in this salsa!) and lime juice.  After mixing together, season with Kosher Salt, Lemon Pepper, and Tapatio.  This process requires that you have lots of chips handy to sample and adjust the seasonings so that you're happy with it.  I believe taste-sampling is calorie free, right?

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I always serve in a white or clear bowl to show off all the colors.  If you have leftovers, you can't go wrong topping salads with a generous amount of the salsa.

Enjoy!!

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