Through My Kitchen Window – Your Questions - Your Recipes

Photo by Malte.

It’s time! This is the week I answer your food and cooking questions, and share your favorite recipes. Well, it’s actually a week past time but I was so enamored with sauce last week…

Your Questions:

I’m looking for a new and different salsa recipe to make this summer. We’re tired of the plain old tomato. Any suggestions? – Danita in Terre Hill

I love making tomatillo salsa. A tomatillo looks like a green tomato with a brown to green papery husk, but it’s not actually a tomato. It is part of the nightshade family which includes tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant, peppers, ground cherries, and pimientos.

Try this recipe for roasted tomatillo salsa. We add extra garlic and hot peppers, but we like it hot and garlicky. Adjust it to suit your tastes.

• 1 ½-2 pounds fresh tomatillos

• 2 fresh jalapenos or serrano chiles

• 3 garlic cloves

• 1 large onion

• Juice of 1 lime

• 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves

• Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Remove the husks from the tomatillos, and rinse them under warm water to wash off any stickiness. Remove the stems (and seeds if you don’t like it hot) from the hot peppers and slice in half. Peel the garlic. Peel and rough chop the onion.

Put the tomatillos, hot peppers, onion, and garlic on a roasting tray and broil 10 minutes or until tomatillos are blistered and charred.

Place in a blender or food processor and add the lime juice and cilantro. Puree. Add salt and pepper and serve hot, room temp, or cold.

What’s the big deal with fresh ground pepper? – Jim in Lancaster

It’s all about freshness and shelf life. Pre-ground pepper purchased from the store will last about 6 months. Peppercorns can be stored in the freezer for years.

It can be economical to purchase peppercorns in bulk, and grind them in a spice mill or pepper grinder as needed. I love using my pepper grinder because I can adjust the grinding size. My husband likes big pieces of pepper, and my son will refuse to eat his eggs if the pepper is larger than a piece of salt. So having an adjustable grinder is handy.

Many people use a spice grinder to grind small batches of pepper they then keep in a small bowl or pepper pot.

Your Recipes:

Lemon Pie Soda

From Michael in Honey Brook

Michael recently made this and thought it was delicious.

• 3 scoops Turkey Hill Frozen Lemon Pie Yogurt

• Lemon Perrier Mineral Water

Place 3 scoops of lemon frozen yogurt into a large glass. Add lemon Perrier. Stir with a long spoon and Enjoy!

Carrot Pickles

From Shiloh in Kenhorst

Shiloh loves these lacto-fermented carrots adapted from a recipe by Melanie Hoffman of

• 3 lbs whole or baby carrots

• A sprig of fresh dill or 1 tsp dill seed (dill leaves float so use seeds to prevent mold)

• 1-2 cloves garlic

• 19 grams kosher salt

• 1 quart water

Peel and chop the carrots into sticks. Baby carrots can be left whole or halved. Peel and slice garlic.

Place garlic slices and a dill sprig in the bottom of a quart jar. Stuff the carrots in so that it is packed full within 2-3 inches of the rim.

Mix salt and water and pour into the jar within 1 inch of the rim, insuring the carrots are fully covered. Weigh veggies down to keep them submerged.

Put on a tight fitting lid and use an airlock if you have one (good investment).

Let set 5-7 days on the counter. Move to the frig and enjoy!

Note: Make sure the carrots, garlic, and dill stay under the salt brine. Floaties could result in moldy carrots. To weigh them down, use a small heavy object that fits easily into the jar, or a small cup filled with water and set through the mouth of the jar.

The last Tuesday of the month I endeavor to answer your questions and share your favorite recipes. Send them to me at