That’s right, tomorrow is one of my favorite holidays… Cinco de Mayo! Who does not love Cinco de Mayo? Okay quick disclaimer: I realize it’s not a holiday that many people celebrate. The day doesn’t actually commemorate Mexican independence either (that’s in September day before my birthday), we’ve just adopted it as a day to celebrate Mexican heritage… which means mariachis, tequila and tacos for all. Having spent most of my life in LA, celebrating Cinco de Mayo is no different to me than the Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Chinese New Year.
I learned how to cook most of my Mexican dishes as a kid growing up in a hispanic neighborhood. There was always a mom, aunt or grandma telling me to stir, chop or mix something. This Salsa Verde recipe was picked up somewhere along the way. It’s super simple and easy to make. It’s a nice mild and tangy salsa made with tomatillos (husked green tomatoes). It’s great with chips or on top of pretty much anything. I usually have this, a traditional Pico de Gallo, and 7 different hot sauces on hand in the fridge at all times. What? A girl needs her choice of sauces!
6 small to medium sized tomatillos, peel the husks and wash well
1 large yellow onion
6 cloves of garlic
2 jalapeño pepper
handful of cilantro leaves
juice of 1 lime
2 teaspoons salt
Preheat oven to 400°F or 205°C.
Step 1: Roast!
Line a baking tray with foil. You’ll want one with a deeper edge to catch the juices. Place your whole cleaned tomatillos on the tray. Cut the onion into quarters and place on the tray. Add on the jalapeños, whole. Scatter with 6 cloves of peeled garlic. Place the tray in the oven for 15- 20 minutes.
Step 2: Blend!
Once your tomatillos are blistered and the onions have started to brown, take the tray out of the oven and let it cool until you can handle the veggies. While that is cooling, add cilantro, lime juice, and salt into your food processor. Cut up the tomatillos, onion, and jalapeños (toss the stems) into large chunks. Toss everything (juices from the pan too) into a food processor. Pulse pulse pulse, blend for a good 30 seconds to make sure everything is mixed and chopped nicely. Taste test, maybe add a little more lime or a little more salt.
Step 3: Optional!
Now this is a pretty mild salsa, yes even with the 2 jalapeños you roasted and added. If you want to add a little more kick to it, add in 1 more fresh jalapeño when you chop.
Happy Cinco de Mayo everyone!