Salsa Colorada

In the Cochran Corral kitchen (and the chuck wagon) one of our favorite sauces, used for breakfast, dinner, and supper dishes, is salsa colorada.   Essentially enchilada sauce, it has its historical origins in Native American-Asian, African, and European cultures.  For example, I am lucky enough to use New Mexico chili sent by my friend Carl in Santa Fe

not, as Stella Hughes said “that store-bought stuff,”

combined with spices from all over the third rock from the sun, and blended using the French roux (roo) method.  It’s a good example of the fusion of cultures here in Central Texas.

In a heavy iron skillet, at medium heat, I dump approximately equal amounts of flour and oil.  You can even use gluten free flour, and the oil can be olive, lard, butter or even bacon grease.  Stir them together until a creamy emulsion develops (and muscle cramps in your arm).  Keep stirring as you sprinkle red chili powder on top (open the window), then small amounts of boiling water until an orange, semi liquid gravy appears (work out the lumps…more cramps).  Now add comino (cumin), tomillo (thyme), oregano, and a sprinkle of garlic salt.  Turn down the heat as low as it will go and keep stirring while you add the mystery ingredient – four or five non-sweet chocolate chips!  What you are looking for is a thick red gravy-like sauce.  If you do use New Mexico chili like we do, I hope you like your food Picosito!

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