Tomatillos, Let Me Count the Ways

May 9, 2014 | Posted by Christine Sanchez

Tomatillos are an ingredient that more people need to know about. Related to the caped gooseberry, they are tart, bright and fresh tasting. Wrapped in a paper-like husk, they do seem a bit mysterious. However once the husk is peeled off and the tacky skin given a quick rinse under cool water, they are ready for their closeup.

Delicious cooked as well as raw, tomatillos really are quite versatile. In Mexico, where tomatillos originate, they are often chopped or blended with onion, garlic and green chiles to make a fresh salsa. One of my favorite ways to use raw tomatillos is with avocado; their brightness cuts through some of the richness, as in the recipe for Crushed Avocado with Tomatillo. Check out our video from our Cinco de Mayo lunch, where we featured that very recipe.

If you roast a tomatillo a wonderful sweetness comes forward, which I love. The perfect roasting partners for a tomatillo are garlic, red onion and some green chiles. Puree that up with some cilantro and you got a killer sauce for chilaquiles. Or if you are a hot sauce fan like I am, try pureeing them (extra chiles, please) with some rice wine vinegar as in the recipe here. In fact, we made the Tomatillo Hot Sauce for our Cinco de Mayo lunch too and here is the video to prove it.

The bottom line is this; don't walk by the tomatillo next time you see them in your supermarket. There is so much you can do with them and all are delicioso!

*May is Vegetables Month on; tune in all month for vegetable-related recipes, tips and more.