Thursday, July 28, 2011

Red Chile Sauce aka Chile Colorado

TGIM was on a special project for his job and it took us to Las Cruces, New Mexico for about a year.  Chile's are serious business in New Mexico and New Mexico Mexican cooking is different than other regions.  Personally, it's my favorite way to eat Mexican.  There is a very heavy chile influence, perfect for the chile lover that I am.     I could ramble on for hours about chiles, the different types of chiles, debate the use of the word chile  vs  chili (quick difference is that chile is a sauce made from either red or green chiles and chili is a stew with meat and and beans)  Traditionally you never NEVER put tomatoes in your red chile sauce.  I mean NEVER!!!!!!!!  If you can't handle the heat of the chile, try a dollop of sour cream on your dish to help smooth out the heat.

Here's a quick and easy red chile sauce.  It's so stinking easy and good that you'll never buy that canned stuff again.  Of course you shouldn't eat canned food because there's all that bpa in the linings of the cans, again another post.

 You're going to need some dried chiles.  These are California Chiles.  You can also use guajillo (wa-Hee-yo) chiles.  This was a 16 oz bag and I used half for a "double" batch.  Red Chile sauce freezes well so go ahead and do the whole thing if it suits you.
 Put them in a pot or a metal bowl and cover them with boiling water to soften. 
 Make sure you get them all in the water.  You want them soft and pliable.  It takes about 10 minutes.
 The rest of the stuff.... garlic, cumin and salt
 After your chiles are soft, pull out the stem and seeds.  You don't have to get them all but the majority of the heat is in the seeds. 
 toss them in the blender
 Add 2 cloves of garlic
 a tsp of salt
 and a tsp of cumin
 cover with 2 1/2 cups of water.
 blend until smooth.  There are still going to be little chunks of skin and seeds.  Don't worry.
 because you're going to strain them out. 
 Pour the sauce into a strainer over a pot.  I used a glass dish so you could see. 
 You're going to need to work it a bit to get all the liquid out.
 You should end up with something like this, some skin and seed.  Toss that into your compost or trash.
After you get all the sauce strained and into the pot (you may need to strain it in batches if you have a lot) bring it to a boil and then turn off the heat.  That my friends is it.  You're done.

Now you have your basic red chile sauce.  You can make enchiladas, carne adovado (marinated roast pork), chile colorado or anything that calls for red sauce.


Lori said...

Thank you so much for posting thia recipe. I have fond memories of the food in New Mexico with those delicious red New Mexico chiles.

Mary said...

Yum!! Although, i need a "mild" chilie to work with. Is there such a thing? Or is that an oxymoron? Oh, I know! A post all about produce!!! You know, for all us beginners! :)

Lea said...

Lori, me too. That's one of the things I miss about New Mexico, the food! So yummy!

Mary - the red chiles really aren't that hot. It more of a smokey smooth spice than a burn. LOL!