I love tomatillos. Like, love. Tomatillos have such a distinct flavor – a bit sweet, a bit sour – that they add a lovely element to so many dishes, especially your favorite burrito. Or as a dip with your favorite chips. Or as an egg topper. Or as a steak topper. Or on salad. Or…
Tomatillo salsa is also known as Salsa Verde, and you can probably find it in the international section of your local grocery store. The salsa in jars is pretty decent if you’re in a pinch, but most of the jarred salsas are cooked, which takes away the fresh, vibrant flavor of the tomatillo.
Personally, I think tomatillo salsa should be fresh – or even better, fresh and fermented. Fermenting fresh tomatillo salsa adds what I can only describe as a “zing”… a little extra sharpness that isn’t spicy, but makes the salsa taste more… alive. Which is probably because it is alive. By fermenting the salsa, you are adding all those lovely little probiotic creatures that are a boon to gut health. So, you not only enhance the flavor, but you also keep your stomach happy. What a win-win!
Lacto Fermented Tomatillo Salsa Recipe Photo Tutorial
(Printer friendly version below)
1 lb tomatillos
2 bunches green onions, diced
2 tsp sea salt
1 lime, remove rind and dice (see photos)
2 large cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
1 large jalapeno, deseeded and diced
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
2 tblsp whey (Instructions for collecting whey)
Step 1: Peel the outer leafy covering off your tomatillos and wash them.
Step 2: Remove the outer rind of the lime with a knife: Start by slicing the lime in half. Then, put the flat side on the cutting board and use the knife to slice off the outer rind, like so:
Step 3: Remove the seeds from the jalapeno and dice. Note: I used a really large jalapeno from Mama Soul’s garden. It was probably about the size of two regular jalapenos. So, if you can’t find one this large, I’d substitute two.
Step 4: Crush and chop the garlic cloves. Note: I used really large garlic cloves. Like, really large. One of my local farmers seems to be a master at growing garlic. I don’t think I’ve ever seen store-sized garlic bulbs on their farm. It’s amazing. So keep in mind when you judge how much garlic to use, I used two of what you see here:
Step 5: Chop tomatillos, green onions, garlic cloves, and cilantro. Size of chop should leave you with small pieces, but it doesn’t need to be exact. Add the items to a bowl along with the lime, jalapeno, and garlic that you chopped in the previous steps. Top with 2 tsp sea salt and toss to combine. Let the mixture sit for about 20-30 minutes to pull some of the juices out of vegetables. When you tip the bowl, it should look like this:
Step 6: Using your super awesome stick blender, blend all the vegetables in the bowl together with the liquid that has been pulled out. Add two tablespoons of whey, stir to combine, and add to a glass jar for fermenting. I used my Bormiolli Rocco Jar for this. Alternatively, you could use a fermenting jar with an airlock. Make sure to leave room at the top for expansion.
Keep the jar in a warm spot for 3 days. After 3 days, transfer to the refrigerator and snack at will!