Ranchero SauceBy: Sonia Mendez Garcia
Servings: 7½-8 cups
When I was teaching cooking classes, my students would often ask for a recipe for “Ranchero Sauce.” I honestly was unfamiliar with such a thing. I knew of making salsa or enchilada sauce, but not this sauce. After reading many recipes and watching many, many hours of food TV, this is the recipe I came up with. Ranchero sauce, to me, is a cross between a cooked tomato salsa and an enchilada sauce. The best of both worlds. It can be used in a variety of Mexican recipes, for example, enchiladas, taquitos, burritos, chiles rellenos, pretty much any dish that would be served with a sauce. Prepare a batch for the freezer for a quick enchilada meal any night of the week!
- 5 Roma tomatoes
- 1 small white onion quartered
- 4 dried New Mexico or Guajillo chile peppers stems and seeds removed
- 1 habanero pepper (optional)
- 1 to 2 chipotles in adobo
- 4 garlic cloves
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 1½ teaspoons cumin
- 1½ teaspoons oregano
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 tablespoons flour
More like this
- In a large pot, combine the tomatoes, dried peppers, fresh peppers, onion and garlic. Cover with water, bring a boil, reduce heat and cook for 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
- Drain the tomato mixture and transfer all to the blender. Add the spices and 2 cups of chicken broth. Blend on high until smooth. Preheat the 4 tablespoons of canola oil to medium heat for 1 minutes. add the flour and cook for another minute. Pour the sauce from the blender into the hot pan. Add the remaining chicken broth. Cook the sauce at a low simmer for 35 to 40 minutes, stirring now and then, taste for salt and adjust and seasonings.
- Let the sauce cool completely before storing in an airtight container or freezing. If you cannot find the dried chile peppers, you can substitute with 1/4 cup of a mild chili powder instead. We like our dishes on the spicy side, so you may certainly reduce the number of peppers listed above, it’s just a suggestion on some different flavors.
If you don’t want to use flour, you could mix 4 tablespoons of masa harina with 1/4 cup of water to create a slurry. Add to simmering sauce until smooth. Reduce oil to 1½ tablespoons. Canned tomatoes could be substituted for the fresh. Just make sure you could the sauce a little longer to eliminate all the raw flavors of the tomato. This sauce works well for enchiladas, chiles rellenos, huevos rancheros, tortas ahogadas, burritos…