ground tomato, husk tomato, mexican tomato, ground cherry, tomate de cáscara, tomate verde.
These little guys look almost exactly like small green tomatoes, but unlike tomatoes, they naturally grow in a papery husk. While different varieties come in a multitude of colors, tomatillos are most widely known for their bright green color. When purchasing, look for a dry green or brown, papery husk that is evenly colored. Looking inside the husk, make sure the tomatillo is firm when gently pressed and that the skin is shiny and smooth (not wrinkled). It's okay if they are slightly sticky as this is a natural byproduct produced by the plant as the fruit matures.
What's it taste like?
Bright green, citrusy flavour with small seeds. It's probably closest to a green tomato in taste, although it is much more sweet and fruity.
Where do I get it?
They are widely available in North American supermarkets, but if you can't find them in your local supermarket, try going to a Latin American market which should definitely have them.
When is it best?
Tomatillo season closely overlaps with tomato season with the best ones coming on the market late summer to early autumn. They are however widely grown in Central and South America, so they are typically available all year round in North America.
How do I use it?
Tomatillos are widely used in Mexican and other Latin American cuisines in sauces. It's delicious roasted and turned into Salsa Verde, and is also the primary ingredient in Chile Verde. While roasting concentrates the flavour and intensifies the sweetness, fresh tomatillos taste great chopped into a salad, or turned into a raw salsa.
High in dietary fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, niacin, potassium and manganese.