Green, vibrant, tangy, slightly fruity and just a hint of richness, this salsa is incredibly easy to make and works great as a chip dip or as a sauce for all sorts of dishes. Most salsa verdes you’ll come across in the states are pretty watered down, and let’s face it, kind of bland and boring having a slight tang and really not much else going on. This is definitely not that ho hum insipid watery green dip, it’s thick and lovely and packed full of complex flavour.
500g (12-15 medium) tomatillos, cut into eighths
200g (2-3 large) poblano chiles, seeded, destemmed, and cut into halves or quarters
150g (1 large) white or spanish yellow onion, rough chopped
100g (about 2 medium-large) roma tomatoes, quartered
15g (about 3 cloves) garlic cloves, peeled
1.3g | ½ tsp green mex seasoning
0.9g | ½ tsp mexican oregano
1.3g | ½ tsp ground cumin
6g | 1 tsp salt
30g/ml | 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
15g | ⅓ cup cilantro (leaves only), chopped
Olive oil as needed
Water as needed
Turn on broiler (you'll want your rack in the middle part of the oven, or lower part if a countertop model/toaster oven)
Toss together tomatillos, onion, tomato, garlic, dry seasonings, and salt with just enough olive oil to coat
Lay out on a parchment lined tray, lay poblano pieces over and place under the broiler until nicely charred (5-10 minutes depending on broiler)
Remove from heat and allow to sit for 10 minutes to cool slightly Toss everything but cilantro, lime, and water into blender or processor and pulse until coarsely chopped
Add cilantro and lime, then continue to pulse until desired textue
Add enough water to desired consistency + ¼ cup (remember it will thicken a lot during cooling)
Adjust salt and place in refrigerator to cool
The ingredients here aren’t anything super surprising, we have tomatillos and poblanos (obviously), which complement each other amazingly well where the tomatillo is bright and green and acidic, the poblano is earthy and rich with a slight bitterness. Onion brings some sweetness to the party, garlic some richness, a little roma tomato for a bit of umami, lime juice for a citrus burst and to enhance the acidity of the tomatillos. For seasoning we use some green mex seasoning, which goes so very very well in this salsa, plus some extra mexican oregano and cumin, just to bring those flavours a little more to the front of things and because they both help to balance all the other flavours of our ingredients, and some cilantro to add some punch and vibrancy.
This recipe is super easy, you simply toss everything but the poblanos, cilantro, and lime juice together with a little olive oil, place your poblano on top and pop it under the broiler to get some char on it all, and then blend everything up. (Now don’t you feel silly buying jarred salsa?)
You want to make sure and get some really good char on those pepper skins, they should be nice and blackened, otherwise you might end up with some tough bits of poblano skin in your salsa. Don’t be afraid to burn things a little, just don’t turn any of it into charcoal mmkay?
I prefer to pulse this down in the blender so there is still some texture, simply pulse until coarsely chopped, then throw in your lime and cilantro, then continue to pulse until it’s the texture you like. Now, if you’ve never made tomatillo based sauces before, let me give you a heads up here, they thicken, quite substantially, keep that in mind here and add enough water (or a light broth, it’s delicious that way too) to make it slightly thinner in consistency than you want it to be after cooling (you can always add more later too) and adjust the salt as you prefer.
This salsa makes an excellent table dip, or sauce on the side, but it’s also a great choice for baking enchiladas, topping chile rellenos, on eggs, used to cook eggs in, or added to rice for an easy flavourful rice dish with like no work (for two cups of rice, replace 1 cup of your water or broth with salsa + 2 Tbsp water)….seriously, it’s delicious, give it a try. You can even use it as a totally yummy base for some chile verde (but that’s a story for another time *wink*), so go gather up your green things and let’s make some nom.