How to cook tomatillos
Because of tomatillos unique tartness, they are best cooked through roasting, sautéing, or in soups and stews. Raw tomatillos can be used, but it’s best done in small amounts and used as an accent flavor.
How to buy tomatillos
Tomatillos should have a solid green color, and the fruit and husk should look dry. They should be firm to the touch, void of spots or mold. Tomatillos should be harvested and purchased before fully ripe. As the tomatillo ripens, the husk will change to a purple or yellow color. These are still edible, but do not have the same zippy taste of just-ripe green tomatillos.
How to store tomatillos
Place the tomatillos in a container lined with paper towels or a tea towel. As long as moisture doesn’t build, tomatillos will keep for up to two weeks (occasionally longer).
Rio Grande Verde
Tomatillos are easy to overlook at the market because of their unique look, but can be a great asset to your cooking. This green fruit sounds like a relative of the tomato (and can look similar to green tomatoes), but is actually a member of the gooseberry family. Tomatillos have a sharp tartness that also can bring lightness to the overall flavor of a dish. There are three different colors of tomatillos: yellow, purple, and green. (These colors should not be confused with the color the husk turns as the fruit matures though.)
Tomatillos shine in salsas and green sauces. I typically roast the tomatillos to slightly mellow the tartness, and amp the sweetness. To use tomatillos, simple remove the husk and cut like you would a tomato. If you have trouble removing the husk, dunking in a hot water bath for 30 to 60 seconds will help loosen the husk.
If you find yourself with extra, you can freeze tomatillos. While you can freeze them whole after husking, I like to cook and make a puree first, then freeze that for soups, stews, and enchilada sauce.
Roasted Salsa Verde