Tomatillos are a small, round fruit that grow in a delicate and papery green husk. If allowed to ripen they will turn from green to yellow and even red. However, we harvest them when they are a vibrant green hue as this is when they are most flavorful.
Their origins are Mexico and Central America. Tomatillo translates to “little tomato” in Spanish. They are a distant relative of the tomato and a staple in Mexican cooking. In most Mexican households, families serve tomatillo salsa, or salsa verde, on their tables everyday alongside more traditional red salsa. These green beauties contribute a tart, zesty and almost citrusy flavor to salsas, sauces, and salads.
To prep tomatillos, strip them of their papery husk and rinse off the sticky residue that is left behind. Then slice or chop as usual. When eaten raw, they can be acidic and pretty sharp-tasting. Cooking mellows out their flavor and gives them a slightly sweet taste.
Tomatillos pair well with chiles, onions, cilantro and lime. Make sauces with them for grilled meats and fish. Turn into salsa (Salsa Verde) or make a soup (Tomatillo Soup) featuring their unique flavor. Saute them on their own and add to omelets or scrambled eggs. Experiment with adding them to recipes and enjoy what they offer!
photos: CCF staff