This red chile sauce is a great foundation for some killer Southwestern grub. The chiles that are traditionally used for Chile Colorado (red chile sauce) are the ones that are plucked off the ristras. Ristras, those strings of dried chiles that adorn houses in New Mexico are not just for decoration they are used for cooking also. This is a basic sauce that is used in any Southwestern recipe that calls for a red sauce such as enchiladas or tamales or as in the above recipe for Posole.
- 10-12 each dried red New Mexican chiles
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 2 cloves garlic chopped
- 2 cups beef or vegetable broth
- 1 tsp dried oregano preferably Mexican
- 1 pinch ground cumin
- Arrange the chile pods on a baking pan and place them in a 250 degree F. oven for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the chiles become very aromatic, being careful not to let them burn. Remove the stems and seeds and crumble the chiles into a saucepan.
- Cover the chiles with hot water and allow them to steep for 15 minutes to soften. Drain the chiles and discard the water.
- Heat the oil in a saucepan and when hot, add the onions and saute until they are soft. Add the garlic and saute for an additional minute. Add the chiles, broth, oregano, and cumin and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Place all the ingredients in a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Strain the mixture for a smoother sauce.
- If the sauce is too thin, place it back on the stove and simmer until it’s reduced to the desired consistency, if too thick, add additional broth or water. Adjust the seasonings and serve.
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Managing Editor | Mark is a freelance journalist based out of Los Angeles. He’s our Do-It-Yourself specialist, and happily agrees to try pretty much every twisted project we come up with.
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