We are fortunate to work very close to the Greenmarket in Union Square. Our favorite Friday ritual, especially in the summer and especially during the month of July’s abundance, is to go to the market on the way in to work and load up with whatever is fresh and available. We are then set for a weekend of cooking and experimentation.
Tomatoes are finally here and, more importantly, locally grown, ripe, and delicious. This past week, one of our favorite vendors also had tomatillos, and plenty of them. So, I decided to make salsa and if there’s anything better than one kind of salsa, it’s two kinds. As the weeks of summer drag on, the tomatoes become more plentiful and the prices begin to drop. That means I can buy more tomatoes and make more salsa. The tomato abundance almost makes up for the fact that July has been the hottest month on record in NYC in what seems like forever.
Although I make tomatillo sauce on a somewhat regular basis, I decided to reference Diana Kennedy for the Salsa Verde and have included her recipe. The Salsa Mexicana I have been making forever and have included a recipe that originated somewhere, I suppose, that I have tweaked over the years.
Both are delicious with corn tortilla chips (my favorite way to enjoy them) and make a nice condiment for roasted or grilled meat, chicken or fish. I hope you like these as much as we do!
adapted from The Art of Mexican Cooking by Diana Kennedy
1 pound tomatillos, husks removed and rinsed
1/2 cup cilantro, loosely packed and roughly chopped
1 large clove garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
3 chile serranos or 1 jalapeño pepper, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon sea salt or to taste
Put the tomatillos into a pan, barely cover with water, and bring to a simmer. Continue to cook until the they turn a lighter, faded green and are just soft but not falling apart–about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool. Put 1/2 cup of the cooking water into a blender jar, add the cilantro, garlic, peppers, and salt, and blend until almost smooth. Drain the tomatillos and add them to the blender jar; blend for a few seconds just to break them up roughly. The sauce should have a rough texture.
2 medium tomatoes, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 small red onion, peeled and roughly chopped
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 jalapeño pepper, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt or to taste