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Sep 12, 2004 02:52 PM

best kind of tomatoes to use when making salsa?

  • m


I made salsa the other day with the tomatoes that come on the vine and it was way too liquidy. What type of tomatoes are good to use when making salsas? One where too much liquid won't come out? And preferably that can be found in most supermarkets. I heard the Heirloom ones are nice but we don't get those ones in my supermarket.



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  1. Heirloom is not a type of tomato, it refers to any line of seeds that have not been recently hybridized for whatever reason. They often taste better, but don't stand up as well to shipping, or aren't as pretty. Check local farmers' markets.

    My suggestion for your salsa is to use whatever tomatoes you like, but squeeze out the seeds before you chop them. Cut them in half horizontally, and just gently squeeze until all the goop and seeds are out. Then chop just the meat. I'm sure there are some types that aren't as juicy, maybe try Romas.

    1. f
      formerly grueldelux

      Plum/roma are traditional and good because of their relative lack of seeds/juice and good quantity of flesh. They are also easy to de-seed and easy to dice. Even those can produce liquidy salsa, though, I guess because the salt draws the moisture out. You can try salting the diced tomatoes and draining in a colander for 1/2 hour or so, or roasting briefly in medium oven (though that makes the salsa a little less cruda.)

      3 Replies
      1. re: formerly grueldelux

        But for heaven's sake, put the colander over a bowl and save the glorious "tomato water" that comes out!!!

        1. re: Nina W.

          san marzano tomotoes- look for the d.o.c. stamp brands- la valle- colluchio, terra mia are good- go to italian deli's or fairway mkt etc

          1. re: Nina W.
            formerly grueldelux

            Didn't I say that? Oh, I guess not.
            Like she said.

        2. I both agree and disagree w/ the posters who suggest Romas. Perhaps I should run for public office.

          If you can't get anything but nasty, picked-green and shipped grocery store tomatoes, then Romas are a good choice because they are the lesser of evils.

          But if you can get good vine-ripened tomatoes of some other variety, I would use those. To me, Romas just aren't as good to eat raw as other varieties. All tomatoes are going to release water after you salt them. Just make your salsa a bit in advance (it's better after the flavors get to meld a bit) and then drain off the water.

          1. What type of tomatoes are good to use when making salsas? Ripe Tomatoes are best for making salsa.

            One where too much liquid won't come out? And preferably that can be found in most supermarkets. Very difficult to find ripe tomatoes in most supermarkets. You can buy their offerings and try to ripen them at home.

            If your tomatoes are too watery for your tastes, drain off the liquid.

            1. I've used any and all kinds. The key is to seed them and allow them to drain a bit if they seem to have an overabundance of juice. You may want to blanch and peel them if they've got really thick skins but the ones I grow in my garden work fine with the skins on. Make sure the other ingredients you add aren't exuding a ton of juice. Drain onions and dry fresh chiles well before proceeding with your recipe. If you use fresh herbs make sure they are completely dry before you add them.