Fire Roasted Tomato Salsa Shrimp Cocktail

October is a strange time of the year.  You have a little spook in the air as the winds blow in phantasm pushing out warm air and beckoning the chills.  It’s also a time for Indian summers when the hopes of cooler atmosphere are dampened by a few more heated days.

At times like this, the kitchen is wavering on cooling and nourishing warm dishes. How about a fire Roasted Tomato Salsa?   Salsa itself is generally served cold and is subtly refreshing for a warm day.  Yet, if that fall breeze suddenly turns cold on you, the spicy heat of a Fire Roasted Tomato Salsa is just right to warm you from the inside out.

When you want to light the fireplace, but are still itching to embrace what’s left of the few more days of late sunsets, head on out with a bag of chips and a bowl of Fire Roasted Tomato Salsa.

Fire Roasted Tomato Salsa Shrimp Cocktail

Ingredients

For Roasting Tomatoes

2 lbs. tomatoes cut in half

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

For Salsa

2 oz. mild diced green chilies (1/2 of 4 oz. can)

4 cloves garlic, peeled

1 cup fresh cilantro, packed

1 small onion, peeled and cut into chunks

1 jalapeno, stem removed and seeds divided

2 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste

1/2 teaspoon black pepper, plus more to taste

1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano (may sub. regular oregano)

2 tablespoons lime juice (optional)

1 pound cleaned tail off cooked shrimp

2 avocados diced

Method

  1. In a large bowl, toss tomatoes with oil, salt and pepper.
  2. Place tomatoes on hot oiled grill rack; grill for 8 to 10 minutes or until tomatoes begin to char and soften, turning occasionally. Then set aside.
  3. Add all the ingredients but the tomatoes, shimp, avocado and green chilies to the blender (reserving jalapeno seeds).
  4. Blend until evenly chopped, scraping down the sides as needed.
  5. Add tomatoes and chilies and process until desired consistency is reached.
  6. Taste and add additional, salt and pepper if desired. For more heat, add in desired amount of jalapeno seeds.
  7. Pour into a bowl and add shrimp and avocado. Gently mix with a spoon.
  8. Serve fresh with chips.
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