I went on a little garden raid this past week. Friends were away traveling and leaving over-flowing apple trees and vegetable gardens behind. I picked a huge basket of apples at a friend’s home, making sure there were plenty left for the local bears to munch on in their quest to fatten up before winter.
Then there was my brother and sister-in-law’s beautiful and prolific garden filled with flowers of all kinds, baby eggplant, tomatoes and an overload of tomatillos falling off the bush.
Our family is known for our love of all things hot and spicy so my inclination to make a scorching hot salsa wouldn’t surprise anybody who knows me.
Adding sweet apples to tart tomatillos and green chili peppers may seem unusual but the apples actually add balance to the salsa so that you have all of the flavors we crave: sour, sweet, spicy and salty in one sauce, which makes it very satisfying. You can adjust the heat by the type of green peppers you use and whether or not you add any of the seeds to the salsa. If you’d like a milder sauce, you could skip the jalapeños altogether.
|Salsa Verde - Tomatillo, Green Chili and Apple Salsa|
- 1 ¾ pounds tomatillos, husks removed and sticky film rinsed off
- 4 Anaheim peppers
- 3 sweet apples, peeled, cored and cut into a small dice (3 small to medium size apples or 2 large apples)
- ½ yellow onion, diced
- 1-2 jalapeño peppers
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, minced fine
- 1 teaspoon fresh oregano, minced fine
- ⅛ teaspoon cumin
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat broiler.
- Toss the diced apples, onions and garlic in the olive oil.
- Place the tomatillos, apples, onions and garlic in a baking pan with a rim and put into the oven on the top rack.
- Broil for 10–15 minutes, turning the tomatillos once or twice. The tomatillos will burst open releasing their juices.
- Remove from oven and pour into a blender or food processor.
- Rinse the pan off and place the Anaheim and Jalapeño peppers on it and put it under the broiler until the peppers are charred, turning once or twice. If you have a gas range, you can also place the peppers on the grates over the flame and roast them this way, which is how I do it.
- Rinse the peppers under cold water, core and seed them, removing most of the charred skin but not all of it. The blackened bits will add a smoky flavor to the salsa.
- Add the peppers to the food processor or blender along with the cumin, oregano and cilantro.
- Process until almost smooth but still with bits in it for texture.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.
- Pour into jars or a serving container with a cover and chill for a few hours to allow the flavors to meld together.
Serve on enchiladas, with chips, or as a condiment with meats and fish.