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  • Jefferson Adams
    Jefferson Adams

    Authentic Red Enchilada Sauce (Gluten-Free)

    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

    The secret to great enchiladas lies in the sauce. Canned or store-bought saucesusually fall short on flavor and often contain wheat. Many recipes also call for wheat to thicken the sauce. Here's a recipe that will deliver a great, authentic tasting enchilada sauce that will be naturally thick without requiring any flour or thickener.

    Photo: CC--dipdewdogIngredieints:
    6 medium dried ancho chiles, dried
    4 medium guajillo chiles, dried
    4 cloves garlic, unpeeled
    ½ tsp black pepper
    ½ tsp ground cumin
    2 cups chicken broth
    1 teaspoon salt
    Juice of ¼ to ½ fresh lime
    Pinch of sugar, as needed

    Directions:
    Heat a heavy skillet to medium heat. Tear chillies into flat pieces, tops them, in the pan a few at a time. Use a metal spatula to press them down flat against the hot surface. As they begin to blister and change color, flip them over and press again. Remove the chilies from the heat, and soak soak them in a bowl of hot water for at least an hour, preferably 2 -3 hours. Reserve a cup of the soaking water.

    Roast the garlic in the pan for about 15 minutes, turning regularly, until almost blackened, and soft inside. Remove from the pan, allow to cool and then peel.

    Remove the stems from the chiles and puree in a blender with all the other ingredients, except the lime juice and sugar.

    The sauce will be thick. I like a thicker enchilada sauce, but if you like, you can make the sauce thinner by adding a bit of the water from the soaked chilies, as you like. Add sugar as desired. I also like to add a couple squeezes of fresh lime juice for a bit of extra tartness.

    You can place any extra sauce in a jar and keep it in the fridge for many weeks.


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    No tomato products? Really? Thank you for posting what sounds like a REAL enchilada sauce recipe after years of experimenting with combos that didn't turn out so well.

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    Sounds delisch! (Though I always get a gluten reaction to chicken, broth or spices, unless the latter are whole and rinsed first.) Here's another packed with nutrients from no cooking, takes but a minute and requires less ingredients:

     

    Remove stems, deseed and devein red chili (wearing gloves to do this will later protect against burning eye or skin tissue). Stuff into a blender filled around halfway with water and liquify. Add additional water to desired thickness. Beware, it's so addictive you might get caught drinking it!

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  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams is Celiac.com's senior writer and Digital Content Director. He earned his B.A. and M.F.A. at Arizona State University, and has authored more than 2,000 articles on celiac disease. His coursework includes studies in science, scientific methodology, biology, anatomy, medicine, logic, and advanced research. He previously served as SF Health News Examiner for Examiner.com, and devised health and medical content for Sharecare.com. Jefferson has spoken about celiac disease to the media, including an appearance on the KQED radio show Forum, and is the editor of the book "Cereal Killers" by Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.

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