Kick’n It With Nightshade! Things You Didn’t Know About Tomatoes
Oooooo…..nightshade!! We’ve all heard of this deadly plant that belongs to the historical poisoner’s arsenal. What would you say if I told you many popular foods are part of the nightshade (Solanaceae) family? A little freaky, isn’t it?
Tomatillo (Physalis ixocarpa), which star in this salsa are front and center in the nightshade family, along with tomatoes. A long list of edibles populates the Solanaceae plant family: potatoes, sweet and hot peppers, eggplant, pimento, nipple fruit, chayote, tamario, Pepino, paprika, cayenne, cape gooseberry, datura, Brugmansia, Mandrake, nicotiana/tobacco, Chinese lantern and even petunias. For the most part, the narcotic poisoning effects of nightshade have been bred out of the food plants over the centuries. The Maya and Aztecs (800BC) used domesticated tomatillo liberally in their food preparation.
Tomatillo is wonderful in salsa, pre-roasted or raw. They add a lovely taste coolness that balances the heat of the salsa peppers. You will not be able to get enough of this salsa…..
Optional: You may hand cut all of the ingredients into small bite-size pieces for an artistic visual approach to food presentation.
Now, dive in with your favorite tortilla chips!!
Did You Know?
- Atropa Belladonna (Deadly Nightshade) was used by Venetian woman to make their pupils dilate, making them bela dona (beautiful women)?
- Tomatillo has poisonous stems and leaves – be sure to discard these plant parts when cooking.
- Poha, naturalized in the Hacut all islands is the Peruvian species of tomatilla and is used in island jam, jellies and eaten fresh.
ITEMS WE USED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE