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Ingredients for making homemade salsa in prison
Illustration by Arnoldo Juarez

I enjoy making delicious salsa to give life to the bland and lackluster meals in prison. 

My colorful salsa makes the meals appealing and gratifying; and salsa has many health benefits! My salsa is made from the fresh tomatoes and peppers we get for breakfast, plus garlic powder, lemon juice, crushed red peppers, Sriracha, salt and seasoning. The delightful aroma that comes out of the hot pot probably pleases the heavens. 

Salsa can transform the boring meals on our trays into something tasty and satisfy hungry friends. When I step out of my cell door to march to the chow hall with my neighbors, I declare to them, “I’ve got it!” and raise the transparent container with the gleaming salsa to make them cheerful.

Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned.

Arnoldo Juarez is an artist incarcerated in California.