When you’ve got green tomatoes, the natural response is to fry them (check out my vegan fried green tomatoes if you wanna know how!), but what about those days when you want to eat something not-deep-fried? I’ve got you covered with this bright and summery green tomato salsa verde.
When I was looking for ways to use green tomatoes that aren’t fried, I came across this green tomato salsa recipe by the New York Times. I followed it to the letter and it was watery as all get out and seriously lacked acid and salt. A rare misstep from the NYT!
However, they did give me a good base and the great idea to broil the green tomatoes for a few minutes to sweeten them up and add a little bit of tasty charred flavor. Since the broiling is quick, it’s not so painful in the summertime compared to boiling or roasting tomatillos in the oven for a traditional salsa verde.
Like any good salsa, this green tomato salsa verde is seasoned with a few other fresh ingredients: onion, cilantro, and lime juice.
I’ve simplified the steps in the NYT version as well as omitted the confusing addition of water. These green tomatoes are juicy enough already! (I promise the haterade will stop flowing now).
Instead of broiling whole green tomatoes and then having to wait for them to cool and remove the skins and cores, I do a poor man’s coring (see above) and quarter them in advance and I throw the skins right into the food processor with everything else. Green tomato salsa, simplified!
Soaking the raw onion in cold water for a little while before cooking will help soften its sharpness while still giving you plenty of oniony flavor.
All told, you can whip up this green tomato salsa in a few short minutes. If you want to achieve total green tomato inception, use this as a dip/spread for fried green tomatoes, but otherwise, use it anywhere you’d use a normal salsa verde. The green tomatoes are a little sweeter than tomatillos would be, and I think this is excellent when paired with something that’s tangy and spicy, like my BBQ Pulled Sweet Potato Sandwiches or my Chipotle Roasted Beet Tacos.
Green Tomato Salsa Verde
- 1 lb green tomatoes (green = unripe)
- 1/2 medium white onion diced
- 1 or 2 serrano peppers thinly sliced (mine were super hot, so I only used 1)
- 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 tbsp lime juice or to taste
- Halve the green tomatoes and slice out the interior section around the stem (see the instructional image in my post), then cut in half again to make quarters. Lay out the tomatoes on a baking sheet lined with foil.
- Turn on the broiler in your oven and set the baking sheet on a top rack a few inches from the flames. Broil for about 5 minutes or until lightly browned. (If your oven does not have a broiler, use the hottest temperature your oven can reach and roast for 10 minutes or until lightly browned).
- Meanwhile, add the diced onions to a bowl and fill with cold water to soak for 5 to 10 minutes.
- Add the broiled green tomatoes to your food processor and pulse a few times to break them into pieces. Drain the water from the onion and add it along with the peppers, salt, cilantro, and lime juice. Pulse a few more times, until the desired texture is reached. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and lime juice if desired. The green tomato salsa can be served immediately, but it's even better after an hour or more in the fridge for the flavors to meld.