I discovered this year that tomatillos love the Grand Valley. We must have the perfect combination of soil, sunshine and growing season to make them deliriously happy.
My tomatillos were so happy they grew far bigger than I ever imagined, spreading far beyond their planting beds, overshadowing unsuspecting herbs and pepper plants and producing so many tomatillos that I ended up picking a huge bowl of them every weekend to make green salsa.
I probably made at least 35 pints of green salsa. I also canned at least 8 quarts of a stewed tomatillo mixture that included tomatillos, corn, roasted green chiles, squash, onions and garlic. I canned tomatoes and tomatillos together. I used tomatillos for green sauce in chilaquiles, enchiladas and pasta. I used tomatillo salsa as currency to trade for juicy red tomatoes.
Although I really wanted to use every last one, I just couldn’t. When we went on vacation, I took my brother an overflowing grocery sack full of tomatillos. When we came home from vacation, I picked another sack of tomatillos and took them to work to give away, since they didn’t freeze completely while we were gone. And then did it twice more before I finally pulled the plants out. I had to take a picture of the last basketful of tomatillos from my garden:
Of course, tiny little tomatillos fell to the ground all over my gardens and I threw the pulled plants (with more tiny little tomatillos attached) in my compost bin, which means I could have tomatillos sprouting everywhere next year. But I will be ruthless and not allow them to live where I do not deliberately plant them.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. And I’ll dig up a buried treasure in my new garden space and get a visit from the queen of England, too, who will be coming to borrow two cups of chopped tomatillos to try a new recipe. It’s always nice to dream…