Homemade Red Enchilada Sauce
1 pound dried red chili pods, medium
½ pound dried red chili pods, hot
4 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon each dried cumin and coriander
1 teaspoon oregano powder
1¼ teaspoons garlic powder
2½ teaspoons paprika
2½ teaspoons salt
4 cloves garlic, chopped
¾ teaspoon red food coloring (if wanted for the bright red color)
10 ounces tomato puree
1. Remove the stems and seeds from the pods, put the pods in a heavy-duty roaster, weigh them down with a brick or other heavy object (to keep them from floating), add enough water to JUST cover them, bring the water to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer uncovered for 15 minutes or until pods are soft. Remove the pods from the water but SAVE the water.
2. Put 6 to 8 whole pods in a blender with 1 cup of the water; blend on low and then on medium until smooth. Put the blended pods in a large bowl and repeat the procedure until all pods pureed (save remaining water, if any).
3. Set a colander (or sieve) inside a separate large bowl and press the pureed sauce through it, removing pulp, if any.
4. Put 2 cups of the sauce into the blender with a little more of the reserved water and blend; return mixture to the empty large bowl. Repeat the procedure until you‟ve blended all the sauce from the second bowl again.
5. Put 1 cup of the sauce back into the blender, add all seasonings, including the garlic cloves and red food coloring (if wanted), and blend on low until blended well. If any water is remaining, add it to the sauce along with the tomato puree; blend on low until blended well.
6. Put the sauce into containers within ¼” of the top, cover and freeze.