Look, I will try to cook anything at least once.
I’ve never made a salsa verde or tomatillo sauce or green sauce or or or…
After a friend shared a food memory with me, I had to try it.
To make this gorgeous dish, you’ll do a few simple things with a few simple ingredients. 😉 One note before you start, I used my Vitamix blender and would recommend a heavy duty, large capacity blender for this recipe.
About 2 pounds tomatillos – I think I had a bit more than that
4 serrano peppers, remove seeds if you’d like it less spicy
4-6 whole garlic cloves, peeled
1 large sweet onion, roughly chopped
about 1 cup cilantro
1 – 8 oz block of cream cheese, softened
about 1/2 – 1 cup crema*
1 pound spaghetti, cooked
Turn oven to broil – mine has a high and low setting, I used the high setting, and my oven rack is in the middle.
Remove outer layer of tomatillos and toss in a sink of water – they can be quite sticky, if you’ve never worked with them before — and wash them well. Cut the tomatillos in half, not top to bottom, though, but through the middle like you might cut open a biscuit. Place them on a baking sheet, flesh side down, drizzle with olive oil, and pop them in the oven for about 12-14 minutes. You want them to have a bit of char.
If you’re not quite as obnoxious as me, and you choose to make a smaller batch, you can use one baking sheet for all of it, but I’m extra.
While those are in the oven, cut the tops off the peppers and remove seeds, if you want. The more seeds you leave in, the spicier it’ll be – you do you. Rough chop the onion. Add the peppers, onion, and garlic to the other baking sheet.
Remove the tomatillos when they’re soft and have a decent char. Pop in the sheet with the peppers, for about 12 minutes, and remove when they are soft and have a nice char.
Wait about 10 minutes for the peppers to cool and rest a bit and then begin adding to the blender – tomatillos (and all their juices), peppers, onions, garlic, cilantro, and cream cheese. Pulse until well blended. Remove from blender into a large saucepan or skillet. Add the crema beginning with about 1/2 cup. Season with a bit of kosher salt and warm through. If it’s still a bit too spicy, add more crema. The consistency should be a bit thinner than alfredo sauce and a little chunky. Taste and season as you see fit.
This sauce can be used over chicken enchiladas, as a dip for nachos or tortilla chips, on top of burritos or tacos, or like I did it here – over spaghetti.
If I’d had some monterey jack cheese, I would’ve added it on top, I didn’t, but you should. 😉
*crema is table cream and can be found in the refrigerated area of the grocery store near the Mexican cheeses. If you can’t find crema, you can use sour cream, but please look for the crema. It’s worth it.