Marco contacted me via an online bulletin board after Joe had mentioned that I like medium heat salsas the best. Marco said, “I have just the salsas for Linda.” I was pleased to receive 3 jars of salsa from Marco and the chance to do my first official solo Feature.
First, I have to thank Marco for being incredibly patient at getting this Feature out. I was in the process of wrapping up last quarter in school, taking pre-professional exams and applying to graduate programs. When I finally got the time off of school, everyone in my family got ill…really, really ill. So, it’s taken a long time to get this done and I appreciate his understanding.
Now on to the story…
What’s strikingly different about Marco’s salsas is that they don’t have the typical Mexican/Spanish flavors that you’ll find in almost every salsa. I’d have to attribute that to a difference in culture and the interest of using unique spices specific to the geographic area from which Marco hailed. Because of this, my interview began by asking him about his history and its relation to food.
In what part of Italy were you raised, and does that geographical area have a particular style of cooking?
I was born and raised in Genoa, Italy. The style of cooking varies from city to city, at that time was live fire cooking (now is either electric or gas, only few places still have that). Lots of seafood and starchy foods like chick pea pizza and polenta all cooked under live fire.
If you could describe your products with one word, what would it be?
Do you have any new products planned for the future?
Well, yes…Right after Xmas my improved heat hot sauce will come out and we are looking in February to come out with a Red Savina Roasted Vegetable Salsa. BBQ sauce and 4 types of wings sauces are next, but no timeline yet.
There is a preponderance of fire roasting in your products. Is that your personal taste or is that something passed down through generations?
Well, my Grandmother and my aunt were roasting everything that passed under they’re eyes, so i guess after all this time it became my personal taste as well. Fire roasting brings the smokiness and the flavor of a vegetable to a different level, for me…the best..!!
What is your ultimate measure of famousness? In other words, what would have to happen for you to consider your products famous?
Be in every store in the World.!
Will you change the name of your products when you become famous?
Wonderful answers, Marco. I wish you all the best.
NOT YET FAMOUS Chunky Corn & Black Bean Salsa: diced tomatoes, sweet yellow corn, black beans, cider vinegar, roasted onion, roasted bell peppers, roasted garlic, salt, canola oil, orange juice, lime juice, roasted jalapenos, habanero chiles, sugar, a special blend of herbs
Not your ordinary corn and black bean salsa. First, the smokiness is prevalent from the very first bite. A nice use of garlic works it’s way on to your tongue and you’re left wondering about the unique mixture of spices. It has perplexed me now for weeks. I keep thinking I taste sage, but that’s neither typical in Italian, nor Mexican cooking. So, who knows. Whatever it is, it works. The heat is perhaps on the low side of medium, so if you’re not wanting a huge bite, this is perfect. Again, if you’re looking for your average Mexican flavored salsa, this may not be for you. If you want robust, hearty flavor that you can use with more than just chips, dig right in to this one.
NOT YET FAMOUS Chunky Mango & Pineapple Salsa: diced tomatoes, pineapple chunks, mango chunks, roasted onion, cider vinegar, roasted red bell peppers, orange juice, brown sugar, salt, lime juice, habanero chiles, canola oil, fresh ginger
I’m quite certain that it’s the roasting of the vegetables that balances the flavor of this fruit salsa so well. While I typically like my fruit salsas a bit sweeter, what I appreciate about this one is the fresh ingredients and the full taste of every ingredient working together. Mix a little of this with some black beans and serve with hopped up rice, grilled chicken and I think you’ll be surprised.
NOT YET FAMOUS Chunky Roasted Vegetable Salsa: diced tomatoes, roasted green chiles, cider vinegar, roasted onion, roasted garlic, roasted red bell peppers, roasted jalapenos, salt, canola oil, orange juice, lime juice, habanero chiles, sugar, a special blend of herbs
If you like roasted vegetables, you have to try this. The flavor is so overwhelming that you want to eat it straight from the jar without anything else. But, I guarantee that you’ll find a use for it in almost every style of cooking. I particularly liked this on top of eggs, specifically a veggie omelette. The medium spice level was just perfect for mornings. I think one of the best comments about this salsa doesn’t even come from me, though. To quote the Ph.D. student working with our son, “This is the best salsa I’ve ever tasted.” There you go.
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