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Purple Tomatillo Salsa


This weekend was mostly about baking as it turned out. It began Friday morning with challah. The recipe is my mother’s recreation of the challah her grandmother used to make every week. But a couple of weeks ago when we were making it, we had to veer from the instructions–we didn’t have enough regular all-purpose flour. What we did have was whole wheat. So using all of the all-purpose (non-bleached, of course) that we had, we made up the lack with the whole wheat. And it was delicious. Since sometime last October I have been trying to sneak in whole wheat flour in my baking–starting out with just a bit and gradually increasing the proportions based on reviews of the product. I am almost ready to make an entirely whole wheat zucchini bread. Anyway, because of the partially-whole-wheat-challah’s success, I decided to sneak it in once more. I think everyone but my brothers liked it (there were about 30 people at our family Shabbat dinner this week, so I think that’s a solid review pool).

But in addition to the challah, I ended up whipping together a raspberry tart. Mostly because I was bored and looking through cookbooks and I knew there would be family members who would appreciate the presence of a pareve dessert. Thus, the raspberry tart. Naturally, I had neither raspberries nor raspberry preserves in the house. I don’t have any pictures of the finished product because it was assembled on site, but I must say, the Barefoot Contessa knows what she is talking about. Note for next time: ease up on the jelly. Plus two of my younger cousins had a a lot of fun placing the raspberries (and eating the mushy ones).

Banana Bread

Then Sunday, Max asked me for banana bread and since we had all of the ingredients… how could I resist? So while watching the championship match of the Masters Open in Cincinnati with my dad on tv, I whipped up a batch of my aunt’s tasty chocolate chip banana bread. No whole wheat this time since it was by special request from Max and he’s not really into the whole wheat thing. Plus, we were out. I froze a pareve one for future use, gave half of the dairy loaf to a friend of Max’s to get it out of the house. We also took some to grandpa, but he was never really a sweets guy, so I’m not offended that he gave it back to me.

That was the end of the baking. But really the most exciting culinary happening stemmed, once again, from the Hyde Park Farmers’ Market. Once again, my favorite peach farmer was mysteriously absent. We did buy peaches though (loyalty only goes so far–I miss my peaches). And the guy who sells the ground cherries kind of laughed at me when I asked about them (again)–am I really the only one who loves them?

Purple Tomatillos

So far I’ve tried something new each time I’ve gone–white baby eggplant, turkish fire eggplant, rainbow chard, kale, and this time: purple tomatillos. They came from my friends at Can-Du Farm (also the providers of the turkish eggplant). They also gave me a recipe for salsa. 

Tomatillo Salsa

I had a minor coughing attack while seeding the jalapeno and chile de arbol the recipe called for and unfortunately, I didn’t allot myself quite enough time to prep it and have it ready for dinner, so it was still a bit warm and the flavors hadn’t quite “married” yet, but it definitely had potential. I’m sure it will be great tomorrow. It has a sweet flavor to it and it’s fun to eat something purple!


Tomatillo Salsa with Lime

Serves 10


1 jalapeno, stemmed and seeded

1 chile de arbol, stemmed and seeded

2 cloves garlic, peeled

15 tomatillos, washed and chopped

2 scallions, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons fresh oregano, chopped

2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped

1 lime, juiced

Salt to taste


Toast chiles, garlic, and tomatillos in a hot dry saute pan over medium heat and toast, turning for 15 minutes. Place in a blender or food processor until blended but chunky, about 10 seconds. Pour into bowl and add scallions, cilantro, and lime. Season to taste. Let the salsa rest in a bowl for 10 minutes to allow the flavors to marry.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Jen permalink
    08/25/2009 11:16 AM

    It’s the perfect blend of your heritages: purple like borscht from hungary, spicy and salsay like your cubano heritage. Looks tasty!

    • orangeideal permalink
      08/25/2009 12:57 PM

      Have you ever eaten borscht? Because I haven’t.

      Also, Cuban does not equal spicy!

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