Red Chili Enchilada Sauce

Red Chili Enchilada Sauce

This is a bit of a teaser for what’s to come on Thursday — for simplicity sake, I wanted to break out the instructions for the sauce and another recipe (plus, there are plenty of ways to use this sauce!). And no… enchiladas are not on the docket! (Though that reminds me I should make some enchiladas soon). In any case, my lips are sealed. You’ll see Thursday’s recipe soon enough!

I first “dared” to make my own enchilada sauce while I was working in a restaurant in college. I was not the saucier, or anything close to it — more like waitress that occasionally helped with some baking - but when I was baking, I would watch the happenings of the kitchen while I slowly stirred a caramel, weighed flours, or chilled dough. It just so happened that my station was right next to the saucier, and that is what gave me the confidence to make this sauce.

Red Chili Enchilada Sauce

First, I realized that the marvelous sauce that was used for braising pork was as simple as puréeing some select ingredients in the blender — and then, I realized that said sauce was pretty darn close to enchilada sauce. I did a little bit of reading and next thing you know I was blending enchilada sauce every week (even without the blender lid on one time… but we’ll save that messy story for another time).

You can use this sauce for oh so many more things than enchiladas (though using it in these leftover turkey enchiladas is perfect). In fact, I started using it to braise beef (Oofta! That recipe is old — please forgive those grainy photos. Oh what a difference three years makes), but now I’m much more into making enchilada casseroles or huevos rancheros with salsa rojo.

Sauce is the start of many a great dish. More sauce! If any of you have ever watched Chopped, you know the judges are always talking about sauce, and with good reason. 😋

Red Chili Enchilada Sauce

Red Chili Enchilada Sauce

Published September 25, 2018 by
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Serves: 2 cups   |    Active Time: 20 minutes



Ingredients:

  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 1 sixteen-oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup broth (chicken, beef or veggie)
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cracked pepper

  • Directions:

    1. Heat coconut oil over medium-high heat in a skillet on the stove. When the oil glistens, add onion and garlic and sauté until onions are transparent and starting to brown. Remove from heat.
    2. In a blender (I use a Blendtec - affiliate link!), combine onions and garlic, diced tomatoes, broth, chili powder, cumin, coriander, salt, and pepper. Secure lid on blender and purée.
    3. Use sauce immediately or store in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to a week.

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    Cinnamon Pecan Almond Butter

    Cinnamon Pecan Almond Butter

    Almonds, pecans, and a dash of cinnamon. That's it: three ingredients is all you need to make this lusciously smooth nut butter, one that is far superior than anything you'll find in a store. And it's not just superior because you're left with a victorious sense of "I made that!" ... it's seriously creamy, with a flavor that leaves you wanting the whole jar for dessert.

    Some almond butters are thick: they stick to the top of your mouth and clump up when spread on toast. This is not one of those almond butters. Thanks to the addition of pecans, which are naturally buttery, this almond butter is smooth and creamy.

    Pecans have a natural sweetness which sometimes tastes a bit like caramel to me. (If you're as big of a food nerd as I am, maybe you'll appreciate this report I found on different varieties of pecans and their tasting notes.) 

    Cinnamon Pecan Almond Butter
    Cinnamon Pecan Almond Butter

    That caramelly taste is paired perfectly with a touch of cinnamon -- which is also naturally sweet - and the whole trio goes amazing well on a sliced apple (the combo is reminiscent of apple pie), a banana (I have long had "caramel banana crepes" on my list of recipes to create, but spreading nut butter on a banana is far easier), toast, oatmeal...I could go on... and don't forget straight from a spoon!

    And the magic is all in those pecans. 

    So why even bother with adding almonds? Well, they're cheaper for one. And that texture we were talking about before actually helps out here: pecan butter can be a runny when it's just pecans. Almonds balance that out.

    So, there you have it: dreamy, creamy, caramelly cinnamon pecan almond butter. Eat up! 

    Cinnamon Pecan Almond Butter
    Cinnamon Pecan Almond Butter

    Cinnamon Pecan Almond Butter

    Published June 5, 2018 by
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    Yields: ~1-1/2 cups nut butter   |    Total Time: 20 minutes



    Ingredients:

  • 220g almonds 
  • 150g pecans 
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

  • Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread pecans and almonds out in a single layer on a sheet pan, and place in oven for about 5 minutes, until nuts are fragrant and golden. Side aside to cool for about 15 minutes.
    2. Place nuts and cinnamon in a high-powered blender. I use a Blendtec with the Twister Jar because the lid also scrapes the sides as you go (affiliate link). Place lid on blender and blend on high (or work your way up to speed 10), blending for a minute at a time, and then turning the blender off to scrape the sides. Repeat this process until the nut butter is smooth and velvety. Note: If you place the nuts in while they are still hot, they will get even hotter in the blender — you may see steam in the blender. If you do, let the nut butter cool off before you taste it to avoid burning your tongue!
    3. Scrape nut butter into a jar with an air-tight lid. Great on apples, bananas, toast, or by the spoonful!

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    Green Chile Smother Sauce

    Green Chile Smother Sauce

    This green chile smother sauce was created for a good friend after we went to a Mexican restaurant and fell in love with their smother sauce. The Mexican restaurant is a little hole in the wall across the street from the DMV. You wouldn’t think much of that little restaurant if you were just driving by, but those that know it love it. The burritos come stuffed full of ingredients, making them bigger than anyone person could ever really need. And key to this story, each burrito gets coated in smother sauce.

    What is smother sauce, you ask? Well, it’s a sauce, for smothering. But it can be used in a kajillion ways (I’ll share some ideas later in this post). Mostly, it’s a spicy sauce that you can pour over burritos, tacos, eggs—really anything. 

    After eating at this restaurant, we realized smothered burritos didn’t have to be restaurant-only food. Why not make our own smother sauce? That’s how this happened. Introducing Green Chile Smother Sauce.

    Green Chile Smother Sauce
    Green Chile Smother Sauce

    This green chili sauce is really similar to what you would use in my Pork Chile Verde. The difference is that this smother sauce can be used in 1,000,001 ways. It is a dip for chips when you want something zesty and tangy. It is the drizzle your eggs need in the morning. It is the sauce to smother every burrito, tamale, and taco with. Basically, it is everything. Still need ideas for how to use it? 

    • Green enchilada sauce (do you have leftover turkey still? Enchiladas are the answer)

    • Green eggs in purgatory

    • A hot sauce for your breakfast (fried eggs or omellete)

    • Serve as a salsa

    • Slow Cooker Pork Chile Verde (use this sauce in place of the tomatillo, onion, garlic blend that the recipe calls for: they are pretty much the same thing)

    • A starter for guacamole

    • A smother sauce for burritos

    ...just to name a few.

    The secret to making the sauce is roasting the tomatillos, onion, and garlic before you blend it up. That gives it a slow cooked smoky flavor that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to achieve. It cuts some of the tartness of the tomatillos. Then all you have to do is throw it in the blender and purée it. I use this blender (affiliate link)! And then you eat it, however you damn well please. That’s it! Easy peasy. 

    Green Chile Smother Sauce

    Green Chile Smother Sauce

    Published November 21, 2017 by
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    Serves: 6   |    Total Time: 20 minutes



    Ingredients:

    • 8 medium sized tomatillos
    • 4 cloves garlic 
    • 1 yellow onion
    • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
    • 2 cans hatch green chiles (I use the hot ones, but feel free to use mild if you prefer)
    • 1/2 cup cilantro 
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
    • Juice of 1 lime 
    • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
    • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
    • 1 tablespoon dried oregano

    Directions:

    1. Preheat your over to 475°F. Peel the papery outer skins from the tomatillos, wash them, and slice them in half. Cut the onion into 4 to 6 large wedges. Arrange them all on a sheet pan along with the garlic cloves. Brush with 1 tablespoon avocado oil, and place in oven. Roast until the tops of the tomatillos are browned, 10-15 minutes.
    2. Add roasted tomatillos, onions, and garlic to a blender along with canned green chiles, cilantro, lime, spices (cumin, coriander, oregano, and optional cayenne), salt, and pepper. Puree. Mixture should be similar to a less chunky salsa.
    3. Store sauce in jars until ready to use. Stays good in fridge for 1 week.

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