As American as enchilada sauce…

Enchilada Sauce


“For what avail the plough or sail, or land or life, if freedom fail?”

—-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Happy 4th of July.

In deference to the America that embraces both diversity and unity, here is a great recipe for your holiday table where enchiladas are as American as apple pie and hummus.

My search for an exceptional enchilada sauce has spanned decades. For a long while, I was a purist who insisted that a great sauce should not include tomatoes as an ingredient. (I will post my favorite non-tomato chile sauce soon.)  

This tomato-chile sauce is a really good one. It surprised me.  I think it is important to use a really good chile powder in this recipe. I used a Rancho Gordo chile powder in my sauce. 

This is my adaptation of a recipe posted on the Food Network site. The link to the original recipe appears at the end of this post.

Ingredients: Enchilada Sauce
1/4 C. olive oil
1/2 C. finely chopped red bell peppers
1/2 C. finely chopped onions
2 T. finely chopped garlic
4 t. chile powder
2 t. ground cumin
1/2 t. cayenne pepper
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 T. all-purpose flour
1 C. vegetable stock
2 15-ounce cans tomato sauce
3 C. water


Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add peppers, onions, and garlic to the pan and saute until vegetables are soft and just beginning to brown. Add chile powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper and cook for two minutes more. Stir flour into the pan and cook for a minute. Add vegetable stock to pan and stir to combine. Add tomato sauce and three cups of water to the pan and bring mixture to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes (until sauce is reduced by one third). Cool.

Puree until smooth.

Cook’s Notes: I used Rancho Gordo chili powder in this recipe. I think Rancho Gordo’s products are exceptional. You can substitute any quality chili powder in this recipe. Rather than pureeing this sauce in my blender, I used my immersion blender.

Here is the link to the original Food Network recipe by Ree Drummond:








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