One of the simpler pleasures in Mexican cuisine, salsa verde, comes in many versions. But the tomatillo-based salsa at Mission fave La Taqueria is especially simple, and has just four ingredients, including salt.
La Taqueria has again been in the spotlight this year as it gets set to be honored as one of this year's American Classics award recipients at the James Beard Awards. And as fans know well, the burritos come without rice and they're griddle-crisped on the outside if you ask for them dorado style. They'll do the same with the tacos, which are larger than you expect for a taco, and served in cones stuffed with beans.
The salsa verde can be found in squeeze bottles on tables throughout the restaurant, while they keep their salsa roja behind the counter, added only if you request it.
Local scribe Omar Mamoon got owner Miguel Jara to reveal the family's secret salsa verde recipe, passed down from his mother with whom he opened La Taq back in 1973, and now it's been published in Esquire for the world to see.
1 lb. tomatillos
1/2 lb. serrano chiles
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp. kosher salt
Peel husks from tomatillos and wash thoroughly, rinsing away sticky residue. Place in tomatillos in a medium-sized pot and add one cup of water. Pluck off serrano stems, rinse well, then place in the same pot as tomatillos.
Bring water to a boil, lower heat, cover, and simmer until both the tomatillos and serranos are easily pierced with a fork (about 30 minutes). The tomatillo skins should just begin to burst.
Use tongs to remove tomatillos and serranos and place into a blender (a Vitamix works best). Add garlic and salt, and blend until mixed thoroughly. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
Previously: La Taqueria Wins Honorary James Beard Award