Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Tomatillos and Salsa Verde

I don’t know what is it with me lately, but I just don’t have time to post. I cook and bake, take pictures, and when it comes down to sitting down and writing I run out of time…

One of my latest food inspirations is Mexico. I am researching for a good and simple cookbook with the south of the border cuisine. If you have any suggestions I will gladly check it out. “Comment me” and I will make a post of all the good Mexican cuisine cookbooks …

Meantime I made a homemade salsa Verde (green) – which is made from green tomatillos. I bought couple of those few weeks ago and wanted to make something. My husband is a huge fan of salsa Verde, so why not make that.

What are tomatillos? Are they related to tomatoes? Is it a fruit or veggie? I’ve read different stories on this fruit, and yes, they are related to tomatoes. Tomatillos are often referred as green tomato, and are a staple in Mexican cuisine. The fruit is green and covered with thin, paper-like husk. Its green color and tart flavor are the main culinary contributions. When you buy tomatiollos, you want to make sure they are still green and firm, once they ripen and turn yellow, they loose a lot of their tartness and are no longer as valuable in the kitchen. Fresh tomatillos can be stored refrigerated for about 2 weeks, they can also be frozen whole or sliced.

To make this simple and delicious salsa the tomatillos can be grilled, broiled or boiled. I opted for shorter version and just boiled them in lightly salted water for about 5 minutes. But grilling them would probably be my preference, there is something in grilling, it adds so much more of a flavor to everything that’s made on the grill… Here is what I used to make salsa Verde:

6 green tomatillos (boiled or grilled)

3 garlic cloves

1 small/medium red onion

1 cup of fresh cilantro

Fresh lime juice

Salt and pepper to taste

Hot peppers like jalapeño or habanero peppers (quantity depends on how hot you want it to be)

I had about 6 medium size tomatillos, and it made about 2 cups of salsa Verde. This can’t be any easier. Cool down your tomatillos and place them in the food processor with the rest of the ingredients and press the “ON” button. Salsa Verde is usually pretty smooth, so you don’t have to worry about over blending it.

That night we made steak tacos with salsa Verde, and we loved it. I put the leftover salsa in a jar, and stored in the fridge - it’s safe to keep in the fridge for about 5 days – this one did not last that long – it was gone the next day… There is a huge variety of already made green/verde salsa in the stores, but there is nothing better than homemade!

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