Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Tomatillo Chutney

In my initial days of cooking, I had a hard time to find out the difference between zucchini and cucumber in farmers market. I have never seen zucchini in India and my mom never cooked it. Many time, I landed with couple of zucchini for cucumber raita. Later, I realized the zucchini has a "crown" on top and cucumber plain at both end !
Posing in the market shelf with an attractive vibrant shine, I picked those tomatillos - thinking of heirloom variety: green tomato(unripe one). Those tomatillos were enrobed in paper like husk. That is a big visual difference between green tomato and tomatillos. Another fruit landed mistakenly in my kitchen but felt in love with the distant tangy flavor.
As California have a large Hispanic population, tomatillos are widely available in our usual grocery stores. It is a key ingredient in Latino cuisine. Usually referred as Tomate Verde/Green tomato:Spanish. Of course all the green sauce and Salsa verde are staple in Mexican Cuisine.
The fruit is wrapped with the husk once you peel it is slightly sticky in the surface. It is shiny, firm and the inside is hard not like tomatoes where you end up with the juice running all over the cutting board . And the main part, the fruit has a tart flavor- with a first bite guaranteed for special effect in your ears!
I am the lone indivual in my house who  eats tangy stuff ! No way salsa verde can please their palate. Only option was the chutney and thought the coconut and spice should cut down the tangy taste of fruit. It tasted similar to the Green mango chutney!


Known under various name:husk tomato, jamberry, husk cherry, Mexican tomato, or ground cherry

Tomatillo Chutney


Tomatillos: 2 medium/ washed/ wiped and sliced
Coconut: 1/4 cup
Green chilies: 4 to 5 counts
Ginger root:  1 tsp -grated or even  peeled-diced
Salt: as per taste
Oil: 1 tsp to roast the tomatillos

Oil: 1 tsp
Mustard and urad dhal: 1/2 tsp each
Curry leaves: few
Hing: a pinch

Rinse the tomatillos and wipe them in kitchen cloth. Will help remove the slight stickiness.
Heat a pan with oil and roast tomatillos, green chilies and ginger n medium heat. The fruit will soften and ooze out the water. Apparently the tanginess is reduced in cooking process!
Let it cool completely, add the coconut and ground into coarse consistency or even paste.

Do the seasoning.
In different small pan, heat oil, start with hing followed by mustard and urad dhal, when they start to pop. Switch off and add the curry leaves.

Now mix the ground ingredients and seasoning together. Serve as a dip for hot idlis, dosa or even rice.

How to buy?
Select the vibrant green . The fruit should fill the husk when it is fully matured.
How to store?
Keep well for 2 weeks in the fridge, if you remove the husk and seal in plastic bags, can be forgotten for longer period!

Navrathri starts from today onwards. A nine day celebration for the Goddess Durga.
Navrathri Greetings to my Readers


aipi said...

Lovely flavors in there ~ the shots are stunning!

Madhavi said...

Perfect chutney with Thepla, Dhokla, love it!!

Aarthi said...

First time here..Glad I reached here..Following you right away...This looks delicious..Love it anytime of the week…Totally yummy..Thanks for sharing it dear…Should try it soon…If you have time do check my blog too…


Vandana Rajesh said...

Happy Navratri Cham. Really interesting post, the point on zucchini and cucumbers is really a good tip for first timers to tell the difference. Have not tried the tomatillos these look really interesting and ur chutney looks nice coconut and the tangy flavour of tomato must have been gr8.

notyet100 said...

Wow chutney looks yum,,,wish ya happy navratri too

Sharmilee! :) said...

Yummy chutney

Happy Cook / Finla said...

Just looking to the chutney my mouth is wattering. We don't get these here.
Yeah when I lived in India we too never had zucchini and other veggs from here; but now they get all these vegg in India, i think we grew up in Indian in a wrong time :-)

Priti said...

Looks yum ....nice one and beautiful pics's gud to see you back

Priya said...

Happy Navarathri wishes Cham..Tongue tickling chutney looks super delicious, am yet to try this chutney..

Laavanya said...

I always make salsa verde... chutney is such a smart idea Chams! Love it.

BongMom said...

I see the tomatillo but never buy, don't know why :)

Siri said...

Hi Cham,

How are u? It has been a while that I dropped by your blog, so thought of saying hi. :-).

tomatillos have a nice earthy taste when compared to the tomatoes. a chutney with it, am sure would have tasted fantastic!


Jay said...

haven't tried this..pic makes me drooool...:P
Tasty Appetite

ruchikacooks said...

mmm...this looks nice, I used to add this with our regular tomato chutney. Wish someone will make me idlis now you know yakkov?

chettiyar bommai i didnt bring this time, but I have a chettiyar amma bommai- thinking of making kutti sit in the padi instead- dont know where all the groceries will fly though :) I didnt hear you sing too, then howcome you got my sundal ::))

Poornima Nair said...

Never used tomatillo before...the chutney looks delish!!

Curry Leaf said...

Yummy chutney and excellent pics. Missed the recipe almost. Your posts are not showing up in my dashbrd. Was thinking you were on a vacation.

G.Pavani said...

flavourable n delicious chutney..

Patricia Torres said...

Yumm.. Yumm.. :-) The pics look stunning!!

Usha said...

Love the idea of tomatillo chutney, it looks so delicious and inviting!!

Sayantani said...

Dusshera greeting to all of you Cham. love this beautiful chutney...creamy and delicious.

foodie @ tasting spot said...

i like your pictures and would like to invite you to share them on

Roshan said...

nice recipe using tomatillo...

do visit my space when you get time

Maheswari said...

Hey ,
We make pacchadi with tomatillos.
chutney is new to me Will try this soon.

toronto food meticulous said...

One hot spicy Indian recipe. I do really love Indian foods. Thanks for sharing this one.

sra said...

Hi Cham, how are you doing? A very happy Deepavali to you!

Sujatha said...

Happy Deepavali to you and your family, Cham! Hope you are doing fine.