To obtain a truly unique salsa, I did two things—grew and brewed my own salsa. To get the sweet foundation of flavor naturally with out sugar, I grow several different varieties of sweet peppers until they are at full red, at their peak of flavor. Then I add an assortment of chili peppers according to the flavor being made. These chili peppers are also grown to full red to achieve their peak of flavor and sweetness. The peppers I grow are not commercially available for the verity type and state of ripeness. When a pepper is full red ripe, it has a very short shelf life. To compliment our fresh peppers, I use lime & lemon juice, fresh onions, and celery.
The second feature is how I cook the salsa- I brew it. In the salsa world, most salsas are bottled as soon as they reach pasteurization. I slow simmer cook Gringo salsa for 8 hours past pasteurization so that all the ingredients release their flavor, thus brewing. My mom made soup the old fashion way by simmering the ingredients for hours. The apple doesn't fall to far from the tree.
Gringo Foods is truly a family business. My wife and all my children, (most now adults) still participate in the operation of our business. Like all small businesses, everyone from time to time pitches in on planting, pepper culling, bottling, labeling & packaging, distribution, and merchandising. When it comes to a large food shows like the Best of Missouri, its all hands on deck. Growing businesses also experience cash flow challenges, which affect the home life with sacrifice and coupons. For this I thank God for my wife being supportive and tolerant.
Having grown up on a farm with a garden supporting the family of 10, I developed a green thumb early. The canning of fruits and vegetables was common with all of my brothers and sisters and our friends participating, some under duress. Fast foreword twenty years, I began growing my own garden putting up jams, jellies and salsa for family, friends and business associates. After numerous requests, I decided to launch my salsa venture, Gringo Salsa. From my experience in working with manufacturing business owners on their insurance, I knew of the sacrifices that would be made both in money and sweat equity. Soon my dream turned into a passion.