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Flavors of the Southwest

This share could easily be something you might get in a CSA is Santa Fe New Mexico, so let’s go with the flow and honor southwestern cuisine this week!


I believe this is the first year we have gotten tomatillos in our shares.  These golf-ball sized “fruits” are a member of the nightshade family (as are tomatoes, peppers, potatoes and eggplants).  They have a papery shell that fills as the tomatillo grows.  Underneath the paper layer (remove before using) is a hard green fruit (or sometimes it can be yellow, orange or purple) with a sticky waxy surface and a tart dry interior.
 Tomatillos can be eaten raw or cooked.  They are used to make green salsa (Salsa Verde), green chili (Chile Verde) or even Tomatillo Margaritas.

Tomatillo Salsa

It doesn’t get much easier than this recipe, from Mexican food expert and chef Rick Bayless, that gives you two options:  fresh tomatillo salsa or roasted tomatillo salsa.  Just five ingredients and about five minutes to make, either version can be frozen, but the roasted one is probably better if you are planning to freeze it.

Roasted Tomatillos, Chilis and Onions

Here is another great thing to stash away in your freezer for the winter.  It is REALLY easy!  Proportions don’t matter although roughly equal parts of tomatillos, chilis and onions is a good target to shoot for.
Preheat the over to 425 degrees.  Peel the paper away from the tomatillos and cut in half.  Put into a large bowl along with seeded and quartered peppers and peeled and quartered onions.  Throw in three or four garlic cloves if you have them.  Toss with enough olive oil to coat all of the veggies and add a generous amount of salt and pepper.  Pour out onto a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 10 minutes, stir up the veggies and roast for another 10 minutes.  Roast until the veggies have softened and are charring on the outside.  Remove from oven and let cool.
Once cool, chopped up the roasted veggies in a food processor – not too much.  You still want some texture.  Taste for seasoning…isn’t is delicious.  Perhaps add a squeeze of lime.  Freeze.
What to do with this concoction?
  • Serve it as a salsa.
  • Use it to smother chicken enchiladas before cooking.
  • Thin with chicken broth, add whole canned hominy corn and shredded chicken for a quick posole.
  • Brown cubes of pork (shoulder or country ribs) and then slow cook it in this sauce.

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