Chipotle Enchilada Sauce
This delicious sauce was featured in Texas Monthly magazine shortly after the recipe appeared in my first book, El Norte: The Cuisine of Northern Mexico. To save time and effort the spices can be blended with the water and broth instead of being ground by hand. However, the latter gives a more rustic appearance and texture. The sauce is particularly delicious when used in the recipe for Enchiladas with Chipotle Sauce.
2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon whole cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 canned chipotle chile
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups Swanson’s beef broth mixed with 1 3/4 cups water, or 1 cup Campbell’s beef broth mixed with 2 ½ cups water
1/4 cup tomato sauce
1/8 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1. Grind the spices. Place the garlic, cumin, oregano and chipotle pepper in a molcajete or mortar and pestle, grind it to a paste, and reserve.
2. Make the roux. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and stir or whisk it into the butter. Cook the roux, stirring constantly, until it is quite brown, probably at least 3 - 4 minutes (or perhaps more), or a little longer for stronger flavor. When done it should be the color of a brown paper bag.
3. Finish the sauce. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in about ½ cup of the combined broth and water, stirring until the liquid is completely incorporated and thickens. Return the pan to the heat and slowly whisk in the remaining broth. Add the tomato sauce and reserved garlic mixture, bring to a boil and simmer the sauce until it is thick enough to just coat a spoon, about 20 - 30 minutes. Add salt, to taste. (If you would like to increase the sauce’s heat add a little of the adobo sauce from the can of chiles).