This simple recipe for fresh salsa takes advantage of two "husked" tomato relatives - tomatillos and ground cherries - that make for a uniquely sweet salsa.
Tomatillos (Physalis philadelphica), also sometimes referred to as "Mexican Husk Tomatoes," are often used for salsa verde; they grow to about one to two inches in diameter and have a tart flavor. We used green tomatillos for this recipe but you could also use purple tomatillos which have a slightly sweeter flavor.
Ground cherries (Physalis pruinosa) are in the same genus as tomatillos and also grow in a husk but are much smaller - the size of a marble or small grape. They are part of the tomato family, so not technically a cherry. The fruit inside is yellowish-orange and you actually wait for them to fall off of the plant to harvest (hence the name "ground cherry"). They are slightly sweet but also with a bit of tartness, so they pair well with their relative the tomatillo.
Both tomatillos and ground cherries need to be husked and washed before using them, so there's a bit of work to the preparation, but combining the final salsa is easy. The rest of the ingredients are the traditional ones - peppers, garlic, onions, lime juice, and cilantro. Chop everything to your liking (we prefer a pretty small dice for this salsa so that you can get a little bit of everything on your chip!).
Recipe: Tomatillo and Ground Cherry Salsa
Makes about 2 cups salsa
About 20 husked tomatillos, chopped (yields about 1/2 cup)
About 24 husked ground cherries, chopped (yields about 4 Tbsp)
1/2 onion, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 1 lime
2 tablespoons minced cilantro
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
(optional: 1 minced jalepeno pepper)
Directions: Combine all ingredients and enjoy!