I was passing through the grocery store to quickly check off my short grocery list, when these plump, gift-wrapped tomatillos just happened to fall into my basket. As a child I remember tomatillos being exciting to peel, their tissue paper-like skins were like unwrapping a present. As an adult I think I might have been more amused than I was as a child (sometimes you have to stop and enjoy the little things). It had been a long time since I had eaten tomatillos, and I couldn’t remember eating them in anything other than a salsa verde. Determined to do something less obvious, I set to work cooking up a curry.
Looking around at the vegetables I had in stock, I pulled out some onions, carrots, a bell pepper, a jalapeño, a potato and some ginger. The ginger was especially key to what I wanted to achieve, because I hoped the sharp, spicy ginger would be able to hold its own and complement the zingy, sour tomatillos (spoiler, it did!).
I chopped all the vegetables in what are my go-to shapes for a Thai curry (which this is sort of a play on). Thick, half-moons for the onion and pepper, discs for the carrots and jalapenos, and cubes for the tomatillos and potatoes.
I then started with the tomatillos. I cooked them down in oil until they started to fall apart, similar to how you would make a tomato sauce. After that I brought in the spices to start getting them all worked into that oil. I used dried basil because it was all I had on hand, but I imagine that fresh basil would be even better- just throw it in when you only have a minute or so left cooking.
After that you add the liquid and vegetables, and from then on its just a waiting game. This curry is a fun fusion of flavors- sour, spicy and a little sweet. Please try out this recipe and leave me feedback on how it turns out- Bon Appetite!
Tomatillo Vegetable Curry
- 1-2 TBSP oil
- 1½-2 cups of tomatillos, chopped into ½ inch cubes
- A two inch piece of ginger, minced
- One jalapeño sliced into thin discs (remove the seeds if you’re not a fan of the spice, or leave them in if you prefer a spicier curry).
- 2 tsp curry powder
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 TBSP dried basil
- A sprinkle of chile powder, or more if you enjoy spicy foods
- Salt, to taste
- 1 cup water
- 1 can full fat coconut milk
- 2 carrots, cut into medium thick discs
- 1 large onion (or two small), chopped into thick half-moons
- 1 large russet potato, chopped into small cubes
- 1 bell pepper, chopped into half-moons
1. Heat the oil in a medium to large sized pot. After a minute or two on medium, add the tomatillos, ginger and jalapeño. Cook on medium-high for a few minutes, stirring to allow the tomatillos to start to fall apart in the pan. Next add the spice and continue to stir for another 3-4 minutes.
2. Empty the can of coconut milk and the cup of water into the pot and whisk to combine. Add the remaining ingredients and cover, allowing the curry to reach a boil before reducing the heat and allowing it to simmer.
3. Stir occasionally, and check one of the potatoes after 10 or so minutes to test for readiness. Adjust the salt to your taste and serve over rice or your favorite grain.