Friday, September 24, 2010

Roasted Purple Tomatillo Salsa Recipe

Purple Tomatilloes
I hate to admit this but I don't think I've ever purchased a tomatillo from the supermarket. And up until recently, I've probably eaten salsa verde only twice in my life. So I can't really explain why I was so interested in growing purple tomatillos this year. I think it came down to the fact that they looked so striking in the seed catalog. In any case, I'm glad I took the leap. A bit late to mature, my two plants ultimately produced an abundant amount of fruit. The longer the tomatillos were left to ripen, the deeper the purple they became.

Purple Tomatilloes 1
I decided to try my hand at making purple tomatillo salsa. After googling for a recipe and not being satisfied with any that I found, I ultimately came up with my own. The results were surprisingly good! For future reference and for those who may be interested, the recipe is as follows:

Purple Tomatilloes 2

Roasted Purple Tomatillo Salsa

2 lb purple tomatillos, husks removed and rinsed
1 rather large onion, peeled and quartered
1/2 lb of mixed peppers/chilies (I used what I had in the garden - poblano, jalapeno and Thai chili)
1 or 2 cloves of garlic, finely minced
Juice and zest of one large lime
1/4 to 1/2 cup of cilantro, chopped (depending on your taste)
1 tablespoon of fresh oregano, chopped
1 teaspoon of sugar
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of cumin (of course optional and depending on your taste)
1 teaspoon of kosher salt (or more to taste)

roasting peppers
1. Roast the tomatillos and onion on medium heat until they are lightly charred. Then set aside to cool.
2. Roast the peppers/chilies on high heat until they are blackened. (Be careful not to burn the smaller chilies.) Then place them in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap for 10-15 minutes. When cool enough to handle, peel the peppers/chilies. Remove the seeds from the poblanos.
3. Working in batches, pulse all of the ingredients in a food processor until finely chopped. Then pour into a large bowl and stir until thoroughly mixed.

Purple Tomatillo Salsa
The finished product has a rather interesting color. I love it served with warm tortilla chips or over grilled meats or veggies. It freezes well too. I hope you like it!


  1. Those are beautiful. I don't think I've ever seen purple tomatillos. The end result looks much like a tomato salsa. I bet it's wonderful. We love tomatillo salsa on top of enchiladas verde.

  2. I'm the same as you. I've never purchased a tomatillo in the store. Ever. I don't eat salsa verde that often. But I really love growing tomatillos. Even the green ones are interesting with their husks. Then again I grew sunburst squash because it was so pretty but never ate it as I didn't like it. I like growing eggplants because of their beauty too, but really don't like eating them that much (don't hate them, but would rather eat something else). Of course your purple tomatillos are so much more beautiful than the green ones I grew.

  3. Thomas, thanks so much for the recipe. Looks so good. I plant to give these a try next year. Where do you buy your seeds? You made me hungry, must be time for lunch.

  4. Looks and sounds delicious ! Purple tomatillos are sooo beautiful. Unfortunaly, I had poor germination on my purples this season so didn't grow them. But I will definitely give your recipe a whirl with the greens I picked recently.

  5. Hi Lorie, I got the seeds from Baker Creek Heirloom seeds but Seed Savers Exchange also carries them.

  6. Thomas, that first photo is absolutely striking!

    This recipe looks delicious! I have to make all my salsa's without any type of peppers in them because I'm allergic to peppers. (so weird, isn't it?)

    I'll have to make this one for the hubsters - he'll love it.

  7. You mentioned this salsa before I least I made a note of it meaning to look a recipe up!! So so pleased you took the time to write it and share it...and although I don't have the purple or the green variety growing, the local market does.

    Will try this Thomas...I love salsa's especially this time of year... The color of yours was particularly vibrant, as were the photos. Thanks.

  8. That looks really good. Maybe I will add them to my garden wish-list.

  9. Hi Thomas,
    What color! I'm sure the salsa is divine, but the photography blows me away! What a beautiful presentation!
    You have done an amazing job with your garden this year; prolific, well tended and a delight to the eye. I love coming here and enjoying the bounty!
    Thanks for sharing your wonderful endeavor.

  10. That picture is amazing....I love the colors of the tomatillos!!

  11. How was the flavor of purple tomatillos? I've grown a variety called "Mexican Strain" which you can read about here:

  12. That looks really tasty! I'll save the recipe.



  13. Perfect timing! I've got a basket of tomatillos and I haven't been totally sure how to deal with them. The recipe looks great!

  14. Those purple Tomatillo's look delicious. I hate to admit it, but I've never had a tomatillo much lest grown them. I keep seeing different plants I want to grow on people blogs. My list is getting long, but I will add this to the list.

  15. Thanks for sharing this recipe! I'm thinking of buying me some tomatilo seeds for next year! This recipe has just given me extra incentive!! Looks delicious!!

  16. YUM!!!! is all I can say...

    We apparently did something wrong with the tomatillos. Everyone's garden blog shows *buckets* of tomatillos and we got a grand harvest of like 5 fruits the entire season. Apparently they weren't happy - they made the husks and then never filled them out.

  17. Okay....I had to come back to your post...that pic of the tomatillos...the first one is is absolutely beautiful. I look forward to trying the salsa....but I nominate you for pic of the season. Really great shot that captures the beauty and spirit of why we blog:)

  18. Just made this, basically tossing everything from the garden and kitchen sink into it. Jars are cooling and salsa verde is back in the house!

  19. Looks to me like purple tomatillos are worth growing just for their sheer beauty! I've never bought them either (nor have I grown them), but this recipe tempts me to pick some up at the farmers market this weekend. Thanks for sharing!

  20. I made a salsa verde with all my green peppers, but I had no tomatillo! Not the same, thing, but I simply chopped up a green tomato in its place! Not bad, but yours is much better lookin.

  21. Purple tomatillos look great! Have you seen pineapple tomatillos as shown here
    Please comment. Thanks!