Ah, the strange but beautiful tomatillo. Contrary to its appearance and the sound of it’s name, the tomatillo is not a little green tomato. In fact, some tomatillos are purple. They’re not tomatoes, either.
So what exactly is a tomatillo, and why should you eat it? A tomatillo is a type of savory fruit indigenous to Mexico. Now is the time to try them, because they are are generally in season from June to October.
Tomatillos are what gives green enchilada sauce its color. The taste is a bit citrusy and a bit earthy. Other than that, I can’t really explain it except to say that the tangy flavor adds an exciting pop to your plate.
Tomatillos supply us with a very nice amount of both magnesium and Vitamin C. There are not many foods that are high in both. This is significant because magnesium tends to be absorbed better when paired with something slightly acidic.
Why do you need to absorb magnesium? For starters, it keeps bones healthy. Also, an adequate dose of magnesium on a consistent basis helps us sleep better.
So, we pair our easy-to-make homemade tomatillo sauce with some sweet red tomatoes and tangy green olives, and we’ve got a lively accompaniment for our protein-rich quinoa and beans. Delicioso!
Enchilada Quinoa with Home-Made Tomatillo Sauce
1 c. rinsed red quinoa*
*(Some quinoa comes pre-rinsed. If yours is not, you must rinse it to remove the natural bitter saponins)
2 c. home-made tomatillo sauce (or use your favorite chemical-free store-bought brand)
2 garlic cloves
1 c. grape tomatoes, sliced
1 c. green olives
1 15 oz. can of white beans, rinsed
2-3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Heat the enchilada sauce on high heat just until it begins to boil. Immediately turn heat to simmer and add rinsed quinoa. Cover. Cook for approximately 20 minutes, or until all liquid is absorbed.
Meanwhile, place all remaining ingredients into a sauce pan. Sauté over low heat until tomatoes are slightly soft.
Once quinoa is done, gently toss sautéed ingredients into quinoa.