I am in full-on squirrel mode. As in, I am really excited about putting food in storage. I am canning and freezing things as fast as I can. I canned 14 pints of pickled beets and froze and bagged 4 gallon sized bags of par cooked and sliced beets. My garden has seen better years. But my garden is beet strong every year!
Tomatillos are another crop that are silly easy to grow. I can usually find them in a 3 pack at the greenhouse. I have previously planted all 3, not knowing how plentiful tomatillo plants are. I cannot STAND to throw away a plant from the greenhouse, even when I know I don’t have room for it. It breaks my little gardener’s heart. All of the produce potential tossed to the wayside!
A view of planting day, before the weeds and chaos takes over…
This year Bill was providing me with margaritas while watching me fill my garden. I’m not sure what the occasion was that required margaritas in the garden that day, but who’s complaining?! When it came to the tomatillos, Bill reminded me we only need one plant. I sent him into the house to refill my glass and popped another tomatillo plant in the dirt! The margaritas told me that made the most sense. A month later I spent the afternoon, margarita free, constructing a cage to contain the tomatillos. They took over the peppers and were threatening to ravage the tomatoes. Lesson learned? Margaritas are great in the garden! And yes, you really only need one tomatillo. Unless you’re opening a salsa factory…
The salsa I made last year ended up being kind of sweet. I had to freeze it because the acidity level wasn’t high enough for it to be a water bath canned salsa. The end result was good. But not spicy enough and kind of watery when I defrost it. I’ve been straining it and adding to cottage cheese for a snack. I’ll throw it into Mexican style soups this winter.
This year I upped the heat and used a new recipe sent from my cousin, who loves to put food in jars as much as I do. It is from the All New Ball Book of Canning and Preserving. This book is in my Amazon cart. I’ll read it when the snow is flying to keep my garden dreams alive.
Chipotle Tomatillo Salsa is very easy to make, requires few ingredients and you can whip up a batch or two in an afternoon. So you didn’t get over served and plant too many tomatillo plants in your garden?! It’s ok. While not as good as home grown (my opinion only) tomatillos are available at the grocery store, usually about $2.99 a pound. The chipotle peppers in adobo sauce can be found with the Mexican food. They add the perfect amount of heat and smokey flavor. I doubled this recipe. You do not have to have a garden to make this salsa and it is a perfect beginner and small batch canning recipe.
Chipotle Tomatillo Salsa
- 2 lbs. fresh tomatillos, husks removed
- 1 small onion, unpeeled and quartered
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 3 to 4 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (I used 3)
- Preheat oven to 425F. Arrange tomatillos, stem side down, and onions, skin side down on a baking sheet. Wrap garlic cloves in a small piece of aluminum foil and place on baking sheet.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until tomatillos and onions are beginning to char and soften. Transfer baking sheet to a wire rack to cool. When vegetables are cool enough to handle, remove onion peels and add to food processor. Add juice and remaining ingredients, process until pureed.
- Transfer mixture to a large stainless steal or enameled saucepan. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat.
- Ladle hot salsa into a hot jar, leaving 1/2 inch head space. Remove air bubbles, wipe jar rim. Center lid on jar rim. Apply band and adjust to finger tip-tight. Place jar in boiling water canner. Repeat until all jars are filled.
- Process jars for 25 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Turn off and remove lid. Let jars stand 5 minutes. Remove jars and cool.
Finished product! It’s a little sweet and smokey. So pretty in the jar! I made and doubled this recipe twice. And BOTH times I forgot to take a picture of my charred vegetables. Rookie blogger mistakes…