The tomatillos (Physalis philadelphica) are unripe green tomatoes with a slightly acidic and sweet flavor. They are known as husk tomatoes because their leafy husk wraps around their skin.
They are native to Mexico, therefore also known as Mexican husk tomato. These little fruits are similar to peppers, potatoes, and tomatoes, as they all belong to the nightshade family.
The husk of this little cute green fruit is not meant to eat, and you have to remove it to enjoy its full flavor. For its many health benefits and taste, this fruit enhances the taste of so many recipes. Let’s explore in this article how to husk a tomatillo to make wonderful recipes out of it.
- Why To Husk A Tomatillo
- 5 Steps On How To Husk A Tomatillo
- Blanching Tomatillos Is Necessary
- Time To Cut And Cook
- Broiling Tomatillos
- Grilling Tomatillos
- Health Benefits Of Tomatillos
Why To Husk A Tomatillo
Aztecs were the first people who cultivated these spherical little green tomatillos. Today it is commonly used in Mexican cuisine and to make salsa verde. But the problem is tomatillos come with a thin paper-like husk that cannot be consumed whether you are cooking it or taking it raw.
Tomatillos come in various colors, i.e., green, yellow, and purple, all of which bear that thin husk. For this property, it is also known as Mexican husk tomato. The husk doesn’t contain any nutrition and is also deprived of any flavor or taste, so it is better to discard it.
5 Steps On How To Husk A Tomatillo
This little tomato is quite similar to the tomato everyone is familiar with despite that paper-like interesting husk. You have to remove the husk, and the rest of the process is the same as you do with the tomatoes.
This step-by-step guide will assist you in husking a tomatillo easily and quickly. Before doing so, you have to make sure that the tomatillos you are buying from the grocery store contain tight-fitting, crisp and blemish-free husks.
A rule of thumb is not to buy tomatillos with shriveled skin as they are past their due date.
Things You Need
Here are the things you need to husk a tomatillo, and you’ll be easily found all of them inside your kitchen.
- A Medium Sized Bowl
- Paring knife
- Plain Warm Water
Step 1: Soak The Tomatillos
So, we will start with soaking the tomatillos, and let’s see why this step is necessary to husk a tomatillo. Take a medium-sized bowl or the one which can easily hold all the tomatillos you have. You can either put water or tomatillos first but make sure that the water level is above the fruits.
We recommend putting the fruits inside the bowl first as the warm water could splash on receiving the fruits, which might hurt you. After carefully soaking your tomatillos in water, let it rest for 4-6 minutes to make the husk soft and easily removable.
Step 2: Pull Back The Husk
Start taking tomatillos one by one, pulling back their husks with your hands. It will only take a few seconds to husk a tomato as the soak has already loosened the skin. However, husking tomatillo can be long and tiring if you eliminate the soaking.
Step 3: Cut Away The Stem
After taking off the husk, you’ll see some of it would still be stuck to the fruit’s stem. Now it’s time to use a paring knife, and you can use Victorinox Swiss Classic Paring Knife. Now cut the stem of your tomatillo nicely and make sure not to give a deep cut.
We only have to take the hard stem out, and the remaining husk will come with it. Do this with all tomatillos. Note one thing here: you can cut the stem of raw tomatoes first before bathing them or do it after it. Both methods are easy and take the same time.
Step 4: Rinse With Cold Water
Drain the water from your tomatillos by putting them in a colander. Now you can see their fresh green skin as all the husks have been removed. Rinse the tomatillos while in a colander by taking them under an open freshwater tap.
Step 5: Remove The Sticky Film
Wipe your tomatillos gently with your hands as they have a sticky film beneath the husks. This gum-like coating is there to protect the fruit from bugs. However, you need to remove it before consuming the fruit to relish its taste fully.
The coating has nothing to do once the fruit being ready to be consumed. It only protects it from the insect world. Keep the colander under running water for 3-4 minutes, and the sticky film will be gone.
So, these were the simple steps to husk your tomatillos. Now you can eat them raw if you want to or continue reading to make delicious recipes from these tasty and tangy little balls.
Blanching Tomatillos Is Necessary
Get ready to boil some water as it is time to blanch your tomatillos. It is necessary because the tough skin of these tasty fruits would be a hurdle eating them. Blanching helps you peel a thin layer of your fruit without losing its flavor and taste.
How To Blanch
Take two pots and fill both with water. Place one on the kitchen shelf and put some ice in it while bringing the other to boil. Put your husked tomatillos in the boiling water and boil them for 2-3 minutes. Take them out with the help of a skimmer and transfer them to the pot with iced water.
You will see the tomatillo’s skin starts to lose. Take the help of a knife’s tip to take the whole skin off one by one and place them in a tray. Your tomatillos are ready to be added to your delicious recipes!
Time To Cut And Cook
Here’s how you can cut a tomatillo:
- Take a clean cutting board and set tomatillos on it. Take a sharp knife, cut off the root end, and discard it.
- Slice the tomatillo in half and then slice again to make its quarters. Don’t remove the seeds.
- If you use it in recipes like salsa or relish, then dice it further into small bits.
You can also broil the whole thing, and for that, you don’t have to blanch the tomatillos. All you have to do is:
Place the washed tomatoes on a baking sheet.
Put the sheet in a preheated oven and broil for five minutes on each side. Black spots on the tomatillos will indicate that they are broiled.
Another way to use tomatillos is by grilling them. You can do this on an outside grill or inside a grilling pan. Cook them until they are charred to enhance their taste.
Health Benefits Of Tomatillos
- Tomatillos are high in fiber that aids in digestion.
- Its unique antioxidant phytochemicals have anti-cancer properties.
- It is antibacterial and has plenty of vitamin A and C.
>> Related Post: How to Store Tomatillos in 5 Simple Steps
Now that you know the easiest way to husk a tomatillo, don’t wait to make a tomatillo dish and enjoy sweet and sour flavors. Share with us if you make a recipe with tomatillo after husking it with our method. Let us know if this article was helpful by leaving a comment below!