When I first started to cook a lot on my own, I was living by myself in Pittsburgh, PA. There were very few Tex Mex or Mexican food restaurants in the area, and less availability of a good canned enchilada sauce without a long drive. I’d purchased a few cookbooks at the local Williams Sonoma store in Shadyside. One cookbook had a simple recipe for a pretty tasty red enchilada sauce. I’ve modified that original recipe a bit over the years. My Red Enchilada Sauce is easy to make and you can spice it up as you like.
Enchiladas are a simple and quick weeknight family meal. You can make large enchiladas that are one to a person. Or you can roll up smaller enchiladas in a type of casserole dish. Either way, try my Red Enchilada Sauce for a quick meal. Use the red sauce instead of a green chile sauce for a different flavor.
To make this sauce, I diced an onion and cooked it in canola oil until the onion was translucent. Added two smashed garlic cloves and some Mexican oregano. Next, added diced tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, chicken broth/stock, sugar, chili powder, roasted ground cumin, salt, and dried cilantro leaves. If you like spicy enchilada sauce, add a chopped seeded chipotle pepper. Let the sauce simmer for about an hour. Then use a hand blender to smooth out the sauce. You can thin the sauce with additional chicken broth/stock if it’s too thick.
Just drape this tasty rich sauce over your enchilada, bake, and enjoy!
This sauce will freeze well.
From the kitchen of A Food Lover’s Delight….
Red Enchilada Sauce
1 large onion, chopped
2 T canola oil
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 T Mexican oregano
1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes
1 (14 oz) can tomato sauce
3 c chicken broth/stock
1 T sugar (or substitute 2 t agave syrup)
2 T chili powder
1 T roasted ground cumin
1 t salt
2 t dried cilantro leaves (optional)
1 canned chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, seeds removed, and chopped coarsely (optional, add if you like a spicier sauce)
Special Equipment: Hand Blender
1. Warm the canola oil in a 6-quart stockpot over medium heat.
2. Saute the chopped onion in the canola oil until the onion is translucent.
3. Add the minced garlic and Mexican oregano and stir around a few minutes to cook.
4. Add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes, chicken stock/broth, sugar, chili powder, cumin, salt, cilantro and chipotle pepper. Simmer for about an hour over low heat, stirring often.
5. Remove the pot from the heat. Use a hand blender to blend the sauce to a smoother consistency.
6. Pour the enchilada sauce into containers. Keeps up to three days in the refrigerator and several months in the freezer.
Makes about 2 quarts. Use as a sauce for your favorite pork, beef, chicken, or cheese enchiladas. Or try my Smoked Pork Enchiladas.
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