New Mexico's red chile sauces are kin to the red moles of Mexico, and cooks in both places use red chile sauces with beef and chicken, especially for enchiladas and tamales. This recipe uses New Mexico red chile pods instead of guajillos because they are sweet, fruity and easy to find. You can also use guajillos or chilhaucles rojos if you have them.
4 cups chicken stock
or 4 cups beef stock
6 dried ancho chiles
, stemmed and seeded
6 dried New Mexico red chiles, stemmed and seeded
1/2 cup sesame seeds
4 black peppercorns
1 piece (3-inch) of canela
6 allspice berries
1/3 cup raisins
1 medium onion, quartered
6 cloves garlic
1 pound ripe tomatoes, cored and chopped
1 tablespoon Mexican oregano
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
In a saucepan over high heat, bring the stock to a boil.
In a cast-iron skillet over medium heat, toast the chiles on both sides until they soften slightly and become aromatic. Transfer to a medium-sized, heat-safe bowl and add enough hot stock to cover. Keep the chiles submerged with a small plate or saucer.
In the same skillet, toast the sesame seeds, peppercorns, canela, allspice berries, and raisins until the seeds turn pale gold and the raisins plump slightly. Transfer the seeds and spices to the blender.
Add the onion and garlic to the dry skillet and cook until the onions char a little and the garlic gathers some golden patches. Transfer the onions and garlic to the blender.
Add the tomatoes and Mexican oregano to the skillet and cook 15 to 20 minutes. The tomatoes will soften, release their juices, and then thicken.
When the tomatoes are cooked, transfer them to the blender. Remove the chiles from the soaking broth and add them to the blender. Purée with 2 to 3 cups of the broth, enough to make a thick sauce.
In a heavy-bottomed saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the puréed sauce and fry 3 minutes, then reduce the heat and simmer 30 minutes.