There’s nothing quite like homemade salsa. If I can, I always try to have a jar hanging out in the fridge “in case of emergency.” Salsas are relatively quick to whip up, but they always taste better after an overnight in the fridge so the flavors can meld. Meaning, don’t judge a salsa until after it’s had a chance to sit for at least two hours.
If you can get your hands on tomatillos, stock the heck up. I typically find them at the farmer’s market or Whole Foods (whole paycheck, anyone?). But really, they make hands down the best salsa. Love me some salsa verde! Tomatillos have these strange husks on them but no fear, they pull off easily. They’re also a bit sticky underneath the husks. That’s nothing a little hot water won’t take care of though.
roasted tomatillo salsa
makes about 6 cups
useful gadgets: food processor
4 pounds fresh tomatillos
1 onion, sliced
2 serrano chilies
½ cup cilantro
1 tsp sugar
3 tsp salt
Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil and preheat the broiler.
Remove the husks from the tomatillos and rinse them under warm water. If you haven’t cooked with tomatillos before, know that they typically have a sticky coating on the outside underneath the husks. It’s easily taken off with a little warm water!
Place the rinsed tomatillos on the baking sheet. Add the onion, jalapeños and serrano chilies and broil for about 10 minutes, turning once after 5 minutes. I like everything a little charred, but if you want a more lightly roasted salsa, decrease the broiling time to 7 or so minutes.
Allow the tomatillos and peppers to cool. The next couple of steps depend on the heat you want in your salsa. After roasting, I deseeded both of the serrano chilies and only one of the two jalapeños, in addition to removing their stems. That gave the salsa just the right amount of heat for me. But again, everyone’s heat tolerance is different. If you love hot salsa, deseed one of the serranos and puree the other serrano and the two jalapeños whole (sans stems, of course).
Place the tomatillos, serrano chilies, jalapeños and onion in a food processor. Pulse for 30 seconds, or until the mixture is roughly pureed. Add in the cilantro, sugar and salt and pulse a couple more times until well incorporated.
This is a great salsa to make a day or two ahead of time. It tastes the best after sitting at least overnight in the refrigerator so the flavors can meld.