Thursday, September 11, 2014

Tomatillo Salsa

Well it is tomato season! Anyone who has a CSA veggie share, or has been to a market lately will experience or see, what my sister calls the invasion of tomatoes. Her CSA share is crazy and she posted a photo of her whole counter covered in tomatoes. I got some tomatoes too, and also got these green tomato-like things, called tomatillos. When I picked up my veggies, Kristian at Rochons Gardens told me that these tomatillos are a bit bitter if you eat them on their own so it would be better to use them in salsas or for cooking.  I was intrigued and started looking up recipes. The recipes I found either said to cook the tomatillos or to use them raw. I couldn't decide what to do. Cooking them would be extra work, but might taste better? Instead of deciding, I did nothing.

Then, on the weekend I went to the farmer's market at Brewer.  I love the atmosphere there. It is filled with people strolling around in the sunshine, tasting, sampling and buying and just enjoying their Sunday morning.  They were also hosting a salsa competition. The competition was also divided into raw tomato salsa and cooked tomato salsas.  My favourite salsa, was the defending champion, Hoople Creek farms. The salsa was flavourful, a lot of lime and just the right amount of spice. The salsa was in the raw category, and they had a sign " recipe available upon request". How, perfect!! So I modified it a bit and it turned out great!! I highly recommend making it.

D& I ate it on shrimp tacos, and we both liked it. Since then I have been eating it with tortilla chips. It is also GREAT for making nachos. Man once those lime tortilla chips are out of the house (aka once I inevitably eat them all), I AM NOT BUYING ANY MORE!! They are too addictive and not so healthy. There- I am held accountable. The salsa on the other hand is super healthy, filled with vitamins and delicious and just tastes fresh.

-6 or 7 green tomatillos (that may be redundant, as I think tomatillos are by nature green)
- 1/2 white onion
- 1-2 cloves garlic, depending on personal preference
- 1/2 cup cilantro (or more if you have the patience to pick off the leaves from the stems for longer)
- 1 jalapeno (or other hot pepper)
-  juice of 2 limes ( i often opt for using "pure lime" juice for the convenience it offers, but here I used real limes)
- 1 tablespoon red pepper jelly
- 2 tablespoons honey
- salt and pepper to taste

- remove papery husks from tomatillos and rinse well, as they will be a bit sticky
- cut in quarters and chop in food processor. Transfer to a sieve and drain.  If you want, retain liquid and use in a soup or salad dressing.
- pureee onion, garlic, cilantro leaves and hot pepper in food processor
- return strained tomato to food processor and add remaining ingredients. At this point i chose to strain the whole thing once more to remove some more liquid. However you might lose some of your lime juice. If you prefer a more liquid salsa do not drain again.
- refrigerate to cool, and serve.


If you don't have a food processor, you can still make this recipe, using a good old fashioned-knife. It will just means a lot of chopping.

These flowers are also from the farmer's market- I love how they brighten up the kitchen! 

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