Thursday, June 13, 2013

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa

When we were on Kauai, we had the Food Network on in the background while eating dinner one night.  This lady made some kind of tomatillo marinade for her ribs and it intrigued me.  We were slacking at our "try something new at each grocery visit" rule and I thought I would try to use them somehow when we got home.  I initially roasted them, pureed them, added some spices and used it as a marinade on fish.  The Mr gave the thumbs up so I thought I'd incorporate them into a summertime favorite...salsa.




I love using my herb garden to make fun, fresh things and salsa is always a favorite especially when a Mexican food night is coming up.  So I grabbed some items from the lanai, got what I needed and got down to business.  Here's what you'll need:

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa
(makes five 1/4 cup servings)

2 large tomatoes
3 medium tomatillos
1 medium onion
1 jalapeno (or preferred pepper)
1 head of garlic
2 tbsp fresh cilantro
3 leaves basil
4 sprigs thyme, stripped
1 tsp cumin
1 pinch salt  (I used half of my 1/8 tsp measuring spoon)
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp smoked paprika

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Grab your ingredients...hola amigos!


Cut the top off of your garlic head, wrap it in foil and roast for 30 minutes.


Tomatillos come in an inedible husk.  When you buy them at the store, make sure you check underneath so you don't buy a bruised or rotten one.  The husks leave a bit of a sticky film behind so after you peel off the husk, give them a good wash.


Give a light spray of cooking spray in a pan and put them in the oven for 15 minutes.  When they're cooking, your house will smell like chips and salsa.  This is the base for most green sauces in Mexican restaurants (along with chiles).  After they're roasted, set them aside as the liquid inside will be boiling hot.

Cut the tops off of your tomatoes.  Do what I call the "de-grodifying" process of removing the seeds and slime from the middle of the tomato.


Scoop out the innards not digging too deep into the flesh on the sides.  Make sure you remove that nubbin on the bottom.  Bleck.  Cut into strips or chunks.

Time for the jalapeno and onion to get in on the action.  Dice them up.


Flip the tomatillos over where the dent is and cut around it.  The seed pod should come out easily and try to retain any of the liquid in the tomatillo if possible.


Get your roasted garlic ready for the party as well.  When it's lukewarm, squeeze the garlic from the bottom. It will come out like toothpaste from a tube.  Sooo good!


In a food processor, put in all of the ingredients except the spices.


Give it a few pulses to the consistency of your choice.  I like mine with no tomato chunks but a little chunky on the onions and pepper.


This is taste time.  Taste the salsa at this point and if you're good with the milder taste, you're done!  If you want a bit of kick, add the rest of the spices.  (Salt, cumin, cayenne pepper and paprika or any of your preferred salt free spices)


Grab some salt free tortilla chips (my favorite are Garden of Eatin's No Salt Added Blue Chips) and dig in baby!


This is the perfect thing to bring to that family cookout or can it up and give it as a hostess gift for the next summer BBQ you attend!


You'll find varying schools of thought on freezing but according to StillTasty.com you can keep this for 5-7 days fresh or freeze it airtight for 1-2 months.  If it is kept at 0 degrees it says indefinitely but I'd say 6 months, so break out the chips and salsa during a blizzard if ya want!

Nutritional Information per serving (makes five 1/4 cup servings):  Calories 44  Total Fat 1g  Sodium 38mg  Potassium 284mg  Total Carbs 9g  Fiber 2g  Sugars 1g  Protein 2g  Vitamin A 12%  Vitamin C 24%  Calcium 2%  Iron 4%

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25 comments:

  1. I love salsa like this and you delivered! I'm taking some in my lunch today and am looking forward to making some huevos rancheros tomorrow. Mmmmmm.

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  2. I knew you liked that fresh salsa that we get when we finally venture out to a Mexican restaurant. Enjoy it in your lunch today! :)

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  3. Sounds delicious. Just read an article that HOT peppers stop prostate tumor growth in mice--of course they had to eat from 3-8 habanero peppers every 3 days. That's a lot of very hot peppers. But I bought a few, and may use one in this salsa. I've always been intrigued by tomatillos. Thanks for the detailed instructions on how to peel and cook them. As for the garlic cloves--you squeeze them out of the peel after roasting, right?

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    1. I make a version with habaneros in it and it's really good as well.

      Yep, just squeeze it like you're squeezing a tube of toothpaste. :)

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  4. Salsa (store bought and homemade) is a staple at our house. We usually make a pico de gallo and call it salsa. We've never made it with tomatillos though so maybe next time we'll add those and try cooking the ingredients like you said.

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    1. I think you'll find it gives it a nice balance. Let me know if you like it!

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  5. Looks fabulous, and I'm definitely going to try it. I've never been satisfied with the salsa I've made, but now I know why...it's really just juicy pico de gallo.

    I bet you could also can this to preserve it. Wouldn't taste as fresh, but would probably be better than, say, Pace, which is our go-to store brand.

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    1. This definitely gives it a little something. It's not a huge transformation but a good texture. I would definitely can it...if canning didn't scare me. LOL

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  6. OMG. Just found your blog for the first time and I have so much to say. First, this salsa looks amazing and I am definetely going to make some (I am a salsa fanatic, seriously). Second, congratulations on your weight loss! I'm sure your blog is an amazing inspiration to others. This is great. I have never struggled with my weight personally but I am certainly guilty of not always taking my health as seriously as I should. I think sometimes people can assume that if you are not over weight you are in good shape (which is of course not true at all). I let myself go a bit after being pregnant with my first child as far as making exercise a priority and eating well. So , thank you for the reminder of how important it is to take care of life's most precious and delicate gifts...our health. Keep up the awesome blogging!

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    1. So glad to see you Joy! I think you'll like the salsa!

      Thanks so much! We're still chippin' away! You're certainly welcome for the reminder. :)

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  7. I don't know if I've ever told you but I love your recipe posts. Even if I don't try them myself I find them inspiring. And I really appreciate that you take pictures and save them on this site for future reference.

    I just thought I'd take a moment to say thanks for all you do.

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    1. Aww, you're too sweet! You warmed the cockles of my heart. I know I'm a chick but I do have cockles right? Let me Google it...yep, I've got 'em! :)

      Thanks so much. Sometimes I wonder if taking the zillion pics are worth the time/post editing, etc but comments like that keep me cookin'! :)

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  8. Replies
    1. I know we like it and it only gets better with age spice wise!

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  9. Okay - drooling at 9 AM is simply unacceptable!!! :-P~

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    1. HA! I think you can get away with huevos rancheros for breakfast, right? ;)

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  10. These photos make me so hungry for this, and I just ate lunch ;-)

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    1. At 40 some calories, no guilt indulgence...even after lunch! ;)

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  11. I just can't do tomatillos by themselves as a sauce or salsa, so I like that you used tomatoes in this too. Perfect!

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    1. They definitely need to have something to pair with to bring out their best qualities but a little spice with the puree and it was awesome!

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  12. This looks scrumptious! I just made some homemade salsa a couple of weeks ago and it was a huge hit with the family. I need to halve the recipe because it made about 12 cups worth, but boy was it divine!

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  13. Looks good! Salsa and melon make the summer bearable.

    As much Mexican food as I eat, I'm sure I've had tomatillos before but I don't think I've ever used them at home. I shall watch the markets this year and maybeperhapsmight give them a try.

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  14. Love me some tomatillos! I make the green salsa kind. And anything with that much garlic is awesome. Thanks for sharing!

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