As I sit here writing this I’m finishing off the last little bit of my Chile de Arbol salsa.  I made this salsa as part of an upcoming recipe for Chipotle Burritos.  But as it turned out this salsa became an addicting side salsa with chips.  I love the flavor of arbol chiles which gives the salsa an after burn that keeps you coming back for more.  I love making this in a molcajete because with each ingredient you see a new layer of flavor emerging along with an earthy aroma in the background.


There are several ways to roast your tomatoes, over an open flame, in the oven on the broiler setting, or in a cast iron pan.  I wanted to gently toast the chiles just until they become aromatic and a little darker in color.  The tomato should be rotated so that it roasts on all sides so the skin can be easily removed.


I found it’s easier to crush the chiles a little before placing in the molcajete.  Begin grinding two chiles in a circular motion.  I always leave in a few seeds but if you like it hotter, leave them all in.


You may find some stubborn flakes but it’s okay to have a few larger pieces.


I roasted some garlic in the oven and added it next.


Grind until it becomes paste like.


Next comes the roasted and peeled tomato.   Go slow and gentle or be prepared for a squirt of tomato juice!


Add some green onions for color and flavor.  Also some sugar and salt.


And 1/2 can of tomato sauce.  Mix the tomato sauce in and taste.  You may want a little more salt or maybe a spritz of lime juice.


This amount fills the molcajete and I want more salsa so I’m going to pour this into a bowl and start another batch.


You just have to taste this!

Chile de Arbol Salsa in a Molcajete

2 Chile de Arbol chiles, toasted
2 cloves Garlic, roasted
1 medium Tomato, very ripe
2 tablespoons Green Onion, sliced thin
1 teaspoons Sugar in the Raw
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 (8 ounce) can Tomato Sauce

Roast the tomatoes over high heat turning often until the skin begins to char and peel.  Toast the arbol chiles about 2 – 3 minutes just until they begin to darken in color and become aromatic.  Place the garlic cloves in aluminum foil and roast for about 10 minutes.

Crumble the chiles and begin grinding them in a molcajete.  Add the roasted garlic cloves and begin grinding to make a paste like mixture.  Add the peeled roasted tomato cut into quarters and slowly begin to grind with the tejolote until the mixture resembles crushed tomatoes.  Add the sliced onions, sugar and salt and mix well.  Stir in 1/2 can of tomato sauce.  Taste and salt or add a spritz of lime if needed.

**This is the amount that will fill most molcajete’s.  It you would like to double the recipe, just pour the prepared salsa into a bowl and begin grinding the next batch.