A traditional salsa verde recipe with tomatillos and an extra little punch from seasonal Hatch chiles.
It took me an embarrassingly long time to come around on green salsa. I could never see past the fact that it’s… green. Very short-sighted of me, of course. So, what turned the tide? A trip to Chipotle.
As anyone who has been to Chipotle knows, they have a mild fresh tomato salsa, a medium-hot salsa verde and a hot red tomatillo salsa (as well as a corn salsa). The mild salsa has chunks of tomato, which I don’t particularly care for, and I can’t handle the hot-hot stuff, so I settled on the medium salsa verde on my first trip to Chipotle. Much to my surprise, I loved it!
This past Sunday, I bucked the Italian food trend for Sunday dinner and had a taco bar instead. Since I had Hatch chiles I wanted to use, I decided to include a salsa verde along with traditional salsa for the spread.
There are a couple of different variations you can use for making this salsa – if you don’t want to use fresh tomatillos, you can substitute canned (drained) tomatillos, which eliminates the first step in the recipe (and saves some time!). I was dying to use more Hatch chiles since we loved the mac and cheese that I made last week so much, so in keeping with the green theme, I added them to this recipe.
Like Chipotle, I would give this recipe a medium to medium-hot rating on the spiciness scale. You could certainly scale back on the Hatch chiles to lessen the punch, and if Hatch chiles aren’t in season, you can use 1 or 2 jalapeños (seeded) instead.
It took way too long, but I’m so glad to have salsa verde in my dip repertoire!
A traditional salsa verde recipe with an extra little punch from seasonal Hatch chiles. If you cannot get Hatch chiles, you can substitute 1 or 2 jalapeño peppers (seeded) to give the salsa some heat, if desired.
(husked (you can substitute 28-ounce can tomatillos, drained, and skip step #1))
Place the tomatillos in a medium saucepan, cover with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil until they turn brownish-green and are soft, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and immediately place into a bowl of ice water.
Place the drained tomatillos, Hatch chiles, cilantro, onion, garlic, lime juice, salt and cumin in a blender and puree until smooth. Place in an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving. The salsa can be refrigerated for up to 4 days.