It seems like I make a new little discovery every time I wonder through our garden. I particularly enjoy doing a walk through early in the morning on Saturdays before our brunch café. Its so nice and cool out and you can smell all the fresh veggies and the soil. As I gather herbs and flowers for the café I take note of things I didn’t notice before. I then will ask our resident farmer about what I find and before I know it new dishes and ideas begin to take shape. Recently we were talking about lovage which is a somewhat unusual herb that I don’t see used a whole lot in both home and restaurant cooking. It has a somewhat intense flavor so a little goes a long way but it can add a new dimension if used properly.
This intensity I thought would make a great addition to a robust, roasted style salsa. So, this week I wanted to share the recipe for what we came up with as its so easy to make and pairs with so many things. It can also be adjusted to use whatever herbs you may have on hand. And while we did this with tomatillos it could just as easily be done with all the ripe summer tomatoes hitting the markets right now!
Roasted Tomatillo & Lovage Salsa
1 lb Tomatillos – Husk removed and rinsed
½ Onion – Julienned
1 Head Garlic
½ bunch cilantro – Washed & roughly chopped
1 Small Fistful of Lovage (Can substitute almost any herb you like such as oregano, parsley, etc…)
Salt to taste
Oil (for roasting)
1) Preheat oven to 400 F
2) Place the tomatillos on a parchment or foil lined baking sheet (for easier cleanup)
3) Toss lightly with oil and roast in the oven until golden brown and breaking down, about 20-30 minutes
4) Repeat with the onions and set aside once roasted
5) Cut the top off the head of garlic to expose the cloves. Place on a sheet of foil and drizzle with oil. Fold closed tightly.
6) Roast the garlic until soft and browned, about 30-45 minutes. Squeeze out roasted garlic once cooled.
7) Place the roasted tomatillos, onions, garlic, herbs and some salt to taste in a blend.
8) Puree until smooth. Add a little water if too thick and taste for salt.