13 September 2010

Tomatillos, Two Ways

A couple of months ago, I made an offhand comment on an article in my local newspaper (which only exists on-line, so why do I persist in calling it a paper?). My comment prompted a personal response from the editor like 30 seconds later, and the next thing I knew, both my husband and I were signed on as volunteers to help get a new farm market off the ground.


It started Saturday and it turned out to be glorious. The day was perfect, the vendors were great, someone was there with a pizza oven on a trailer making piping hot fresh pizzas, and I spent two and a half hours chatting with friends and neighbors and acquaintances and farmers and strange dogs. And I felt relieved and proud that people showed up, because publicity - which is what I've been doing - is not my strong suit.

Anyway, I came home with a weird mish-mosh of things, like a wild boar cacciatorini and some fresh eggs and a jar of "cream of sausage" tomatoes (which was neither cream nor sausage, but just pale yellow plum tomatoes) - and a quart box of tomatillos. Why I bought the tomatillos is kind of a mystery to me, but it could be because they came from a tiny farm run by two charming women with dirt under their fingernails.

Of course, then I had to figure out what to do with the tomatillos - something I've never ever before bought.

First up, I made a salad, more or less as follows:

  • 1 ear of leftover corn, kernels sliced off
  • 1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/3 cup of quinoa (which cooked up to about a cup and a half)
  • 10 tomatillos, cleaned and diced
  • some chopped parsley
  • some chopped fresh oregano
  • juice of a lime
  • a glug of olive oil
  • smoked paprika
  • salsa salad seasoning
  • salt
  • pepper
Toss together and eat. I had the leftovers for lunch today, and if anything, it was even better.

The next night, I made kind of a salsa, which we ate with grilled chicken and polenta:

  • 20 tomatillos, cleaned
  • 1 medium tomato, chopped
  • a glug of olive oil
  • a splash of moscatel vinegar
  • a few springs of oregano, chopped
  • salt
  • pepper
We roasted the tomatillos until they collapsed. After they'd cooled, I buzzed them with the hand blender and stirred the rest of the ingredients in. I should have chopped the tomato up a little finer, but no matter - it was a lovely, sweet sauce.

Moral of the story? Try the tomatillos.



Tomatillos are super good in pico de gallo. Rough chop tomatoes, tomatillos, cilantro, onion, add salt & lime juice. SO GOOD.

Anonymous said...

That's awesome, what you did. As I've complained before, we don't have much around here- the weekly markets are all tomatoes and zucchini - boring!

meno said...

You've inspired me. I love tomatillo sauce, not i must make some.

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

Maybe you're next thing should be a cookbook based on what is sold at the farmer's market--your food always sounds incredible.

RuthWells said...

Good for you -- what a wonderful project!

shrink on the couch said...

I luuuuurrrrve me some tomatillo hot sauce. Never brave enough to bring home fresh and make it myself. And congrats on the success of your market. Sounds like such a fun grocery experience.

mayberry said...

YUM! And congratulations on a successful day at the market.

FreshHell said...

In one of the "best of the market" bags through my food co-op, I rec'd ONE tomatillo. I had no idea what to do with it. I think it went bad before I could figure it out. Salsa - I'll try that next time.

FreshHell said...

In one of the "best of the market" bags through my food co-op, I rec'd ONE tomatillo. I had no idea what to do with it. I think it went bad before I could figure it out. Salsa - I'll try that next time.

The Library Lady said...

And Martha Rose Schulman agrees.
Her Recipes For Health is all about tomatillos this week.
Well done with the market!

Anjali said...


Kyla said...

I think "glug" might be my favorite measurement term ever!

bipolarlawyerook said...

They are awesome roasted and whizzed with blanched almonds and olive oil and white grapes into a kind of whitish gazpacho and chilled, drizzled with olive oil and a bit of white balsamic vinegar and a little lime juice.

Unknown said...

some delicious ideas here!