As the seasons start to change, both home gardeners and neighbors engaged with our community gardens start to dream about all the ways to use the late summer harvest. In September, tomatoes, peppers, and various herbs are particularly abundant, so every few years, we bring neighbors of all ages together to embark on a salsa-making adventure.

The process brings together the experienced homemaker with the curious garden enthusiast, and there is plenty of work for everyone to do. Together, we peel, chop, season, mix, and then, can the final blend. As we fill jar after jar with homemade salsa, we savor the satisfaction of preserving the flavors of summer to be enjoyed throughout the year.

This salsa party tradition isn’t just about the food, though. It’s also about the journey from garden to table and neighbors coming together to create something delicious.