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Authentic Red Chile Sauce made entirely from scratch is a thing of beauty --- you can get anything like this out of a can!


4 cups

Total time

0 minutes




  • 10 cloves of garlic
  • 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (divided)
  • salt
  • 8 ounces dried New Mexico or California red chile pods (stemmed and seeded)
  • 5 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground oregano (preferably Mexican)
  • 1 tsp ground white pepper


  1. Set the oven to 350F
  2. Peel and toss the garlic cloves with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and a sprinkling of salt. Wrap them in foil and roast for 30 minutes. The cloves will be softened and fragrant. Place the cloves in the bowl of a food processor, fitted with the blade attachment,
  3. Put the chile pods in a large heavy bottomed stockpot. Heat the pot over a medium flame and stir the chiles until they start to toast and release their aroma. This will take about 2-4 minutes, but watch carefully, they burn easily. Stir continuously.
  4. Fill the pot with water, and bring to a boil. Stir occasionally so all the chiles get submerged, and cook for about 15-20 minutes. Remove the chilies, but reserve 5 cups of the cooking water.
  5. Working in 2 batches, puree the chiles along with the garlic cloves. Run the machine until the chiles are ground down to a smooth, thick paste, and stop to scrape down the sides of the machine if necessary. Process in the reserved liquid and run until smooth. Again, you will need to do this in batches so your machine doesn't overflow.
  6. Strain the sauce through mesh sieve into a clean bowl. Be sure to push the sauce through with the back of a spoon to get all the liquid through. Discard the solids.
  7. Set the same pan over medium heat add 5 tablespoons of oil, and then add the flour, stirring until it forms a paste. Add in the spices, and stir continuously until smooth.
  8. Whisk in the chile mixture, and bring to a boil. Cook for about 5 minutes until the sauce is thickened and coats the back of a spoon.
  9. Cool the sauce and then store in tightly closed containers in the refrigerator.

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