Fresh garden tomato and hot pepper salsa

Ingredients, for about 4 1/2 cups:

3 cups tomatoes, diced (8 to 12 of a salad-sized variety such as Roma or San Francisco Fog)
1/2 cup yellow onion or shallot, finely diced
1/3 cup (6 to 8 stems) wild leeks or green onions, diced
1 Tbsp. (about 3 cloves) minced garlic
1/3 cup cilantro, diced
1 pasilla pepper, seeds removed, diced
1 to 4 large fresh cayenne peppers, seeds removed*, minced
1 tsp. honey
the juice of 1 lime
1 tsp. cumin or chili powder
1 tsp. salt


1. Once the tomatoes have been diced, toss them in a colander over the sink, shaking gently, to remove the seeds and most of the juice. Pour into a medium-sized mixing bowl (a 2 liter one works well) and stir in the rest of the diced ingredients except for the cayenne peppers.

2. Combine the honey, lime juice, cumin and salt in a small bowl or cup. Pour into the mixing bowl and stir well.

3. Add one of the minced cayenne peppers, mix it in and taste the salsa to determine whether it should be hotter, and gradually add more cayenne if desired.* (It depends on the size of the peppers used, but this is a mild-to-medium spicy recipe.)

4. Let the ingredients set in the refrigerator for at least an hour so that the flavors mix together nicely. It will taste even better the next day, and can last up to 10 days.

Serve with corn tortilla chips, and margaritas or fresh lemonade.

Other options: *The seeds are usually the hottest part of a pepper, so including these, especially crushed or ground, can increase the spiciness significantly. Many different peppers (fresh, dried, ground) can work well in salsas. It's best to experiment with small amounts until you've determined how hot and/or flavorful each variety can be. The Scoville Scale is a helpful guide.
Diced fresh pineapple, mango, corn, avocado and tomatillo are great salsa additions. Red wine vinegar, pickled garlic, basil, ground black pepper, and sour cream can also contribute interesting flavors.
Roasting or grilling the tomatoes, pasilla/bell peppers, yellow onion/garlic, corn and tomatillos (as described here or here) adds a rich complexity to salsas.