Tomatillo-Serrano Salsa


Tila’s in Houston has the most delicious tomatillo sauce.  Luckily we found a recipe that tastes pretty much identical to Tila’s, and we’ve been making this sauce ever since we lived in Houston…almost 9 years ago!

This recipe is from Rick Bayless’s Mexican Kitchen (the photo on my cookbook is different, but I assume it’s all the same recipes).

This sauce is excellent for just about anything: with chips, enchilada sauce, tamale sauce etc.


  • 1 lb. tomatillos, husked and rinsed
  • 1 to 3 serranos
  • 1 1/2 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 medium white onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 c. chicken stock
  • 1/3 c. roughly chopped cilantro
  • salt, 1/2 to 3/4 tsp., depending on the saltiness of the broth


  1. The tomatillos and chiles: lay the tomatillos and chiles on a baking sheet and place about 4 inches below a very hot broiler.  when tomatillos and chiles blister, blacken and soften on one side, about 5 minutes, turn them over and roast the other side.  When all sides are roasted, transfer tomatillos, chiles and any accumulated juices to a food processor or blender.
  2. The puree: heat 1 TBSP oil in a deep skillet.  Add the onion and cook, stirring often until deep and golden, about 8 minutes.  Stir in garlic and cook a minute longer; then scrape the browned mixture into the processor or blender. Pulse to a rough looking puree–smooth enough to hold together but rough enough to keep it from being too smooth.
  3. Finishing the sauce: Heat the remaining oil over medium high heat. Add the Puree and stir constantly for 4 or 5 minutes. The sauce base sears and sizzles into a darker and thicker mass. Stir in the broth, return to a boil, reduce heat to medium and simmer briskly until thick enough to coat a spoon, about 10 minutes. Stir in cilantro, then taste and season with salt.

Tomatillo-Serrano Salsa:


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