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[sahl-suh; Spanish sahl-sah] /ˈsɑl sə; Spanish ˈsɑl sɑ/
a lively, vigorous type of contemporary Latin American popular music, blending predominantly Cuban rhythms with elements of jazz, rock, and soul music.
a ballroom dance of Puerto Rican origin, performed to this music, similar to the mambo, but faster with the accent on the first beat instead of the second beat of each measure.
Mexican Cookery. a sauce, especially a hot sauce containing chilies.
verb (used without object)
to dance the salsa.
Origin of salsa
1970-75; < American Spanish, Spanish: literally, sauce; probably so called orig. because of its mixture of styles Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for salsa
  • Then they rated their liking for a variety of foods, from cake and ice cream to cranberries, sauerkraut and salsa.
  • Without the ad, maybe you wouldn't have thought to buy that salsa otherwise.
  • They're sweet, but a little bit tangy and excellent in salsa or tomato sandwiches.
  • Avocado salsa and goat cheese top the burger, compensating for the lack of flavor in the overdone meat.
  • If you'd gotten up to refill the salsa, you missed it.
  • On a side note, it's fascinating that the toilet-sharing video is accompanied by salsa music.
  • The salsa that came with the tacos was excellent-spicy yet not overpowering.
  • Refrigerate homemade salsa in pasta sauce jars instead of buying commercially prepared salsa.
  • It is the guaracha that would become the central style in the genre known as salsa.
  • Come the weekend, salsa and merengue bands turn the place into one big street fiesta.
British Dictionary definitions for salsa


a type of Latin American big-band dance music
a dance performed to this kind of music
(Mexican cookery) a spicy tomato-based sauce
Word Origin
C20: from Spanish: sauce
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for salsa

kind of sauce, 1846; kind of dance music, 1975, from Spanish, literally "sauce," from Vulgar Latin *salsa "condiment" (see sauce (n.)). In American Spanish especially used of a kind of relish with chopped-up ingredients; the music so called from its blend of Latin jazz and rock styles.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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