TOMATILLO (Miltomate)

Miltomate and tomatillo (green tomato) are native of Mexico. They are plants belonging to the Solanaceae family. In pre-Hispanic times, in certain regions of our country, the use and consumption of tomato was more common than jitomate (red tomato).
The tomatillo (Physalis ixocarpa and Physalis philadelphica), also known as tomate verde or tomate de cascara is the fruit of herbaceous plants, both wild and domesticated, which grow well in almost all climates and lands. They are climbing plants with yellow flowers, some varieties have blue, green or purple spots. The fruit resembles a balloon, and is covered by the accompanying chalice during development. Its shape is nearly spherical, has a green color, which at maturity can still switch to green or yellow or purple. The pulp is fleshy and juicy, with a slightly acidic flavor or something sweet, containing numerous edible, yellow to brown almost flat seeds.
The miltomate (Physalis ixocarpa Bro., Physalis peruviana L., Physalis angulate and Physalis pubescens L.) is known as milpero tomato, tomate de milpa or tomatillo. This species is planted in the milpas, hence its name; it is smaller than the tomato, but with the same features, except for the amount of seeds that is more numerous, smaller and hard.
In Mexico, given its demand, miltomate is being grown in large quantities in the North Pacific (Sinaloa) and Central Pacific (Jalisco) regions.
The seasonality varies according to the climate zone and variety. The largest production and best fruits are obtained from January to March.
Miltomate and tomato provide carbohydrates, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium and potassium, and a good amount of vitamin C.
They are consumed fresh and chopped, ground or martajados for salsas; also in seafood cocktails and ceviches, and other preparations that are served cold; roasted or boiled are essential in certain sauces, pipianes, moles, soupy stews or different sauces. The calyx (shell) is involved in the cooking of tequesquite (natural carbonates), and they replace in many preparations baking powder or carbonate salts in the elaboration of tamales.


Chilayo colimense
Enchiladas verdes

Crawfish huatape
Milpa tlatonile